PM chooses a Governor-General - people choose a president
"New Zealanders are more than mature enough to choose a head of state of their own. New Zealand will get its 20th
Governor-General following another colonial-era ceremony today. Sir Jerry is only the 10th New Zealander to hold the
office, now considered our de facto head of state" said Lewis Holden, chair of the Republican Movement.
In contrast, the people of Ireland will go to the polls on 27 October to elect a new president. The Governor-General is
appointed by the Queen, on the exclusive advice of the Prime Minister.
"While we wish Sir Jerry well, the office he holds is increasingly at odds with the aspirations of New
Zealanders. Despite the evolution of the office in recent years - notably during Sir Paul Reeves tenure as
Governor-General in representing New Zealand overseas - the office is not a full New Zealand head of state. That
position is monopolised by an absentee family in the United Kingdom" said Mr Holden.
"The Republican Movement and a number of academics feel that the office does not provide sufficient
constitutional checks, and does not have sufficient checks put on it. When compared with other countries following the
parliamentary system with an elected head of state, this is clearly the case. The Governor-General's powers are not
clearly defined, nor does their appointment process lead to an independent arbiter as some claim the office is. New
Zealand deserves better checks and balances. New Zealanders deserve the right to choose their head of state" concluded