It seems to have been discussed on and off for a number of years, but John Key put the debate back on the agenda in 2014 by announcing his intention to hold a referendum on the subject should his National party be re-elected.
The current flag, it is argued, is too similar to the Australian flag and a new flag is needed which better represents the independence and culture of ‘brand’ New Zealand.
It’s very controversial of course; many new Zealanders are still emotionally attached to the present flag and complain that the cost of the exercise – about $26 million NZ dollars – could be better spent elsewhere.
The first referendum in 2015 chose a preferred alternative flag ( a black, white, and blue Silver fern flag by Kyle Lockwood ) and a second referendum in March 2016 will ask New Zealanders to choose between the current flag and the preferred alternative.
Is it just a flight of fancy of John Key? Or is New Zealand rebranding itself as a new dynamic nation? What do you think?