The HoS reports:
Becoming a republic would be the “making of New Zealand as a country” and we need to start talking about it now, according to Labour leader Phil Goff.
In the most direct call for change from any senior politician yet, Goff said the end of Queen Elizabeth’s reign was the logical transition point.
“Succession of the monarchy is the time to have a head of state who is a New Zealander,” said Goff. “We need to start the conversation now. Don’t rush it. Fully consult the people of New Zealand. It’s a major change and needs a reasonable consensus.”
Now, Goff has told the Herald on Sunday that when he was foreign minister and trade minister, people he spoke to, particularly in Asian countries, were often confused that New Zealand’s head of state was from another country.
He said discussion about becoming a republic would be a lengthy one that dealt with issues around the Treaty of Waitangi and the flag.
“Let’s begin a formal process now,” said Goff. “Where do we want to be in 20 years?”
It’s nice to have a political leader who will not just say this is a question for the future, but who recognises that we should be starting a process to decide now.