Decision on NZ government looming


NZ First leader Winston Peters and his negotiating team, including MPs Shane Jones, left, and Fletcher Tabuteau, after their coalition talks with National at Parliament.

Mr Peters said there were nine government formation options open to NZ First when the talks began on Sunday, and all those options were still on the table.

Peters has announced that, due to funeral engagements, it is impossible to get all of his party's board members together for a decision tomorrow.

Catchpole said "some of the board members have requested for their names not to be disclosed and so it's either all or nothing so you won't be getting that list" and questioned why the board membership was of public interest. "But that would not be the kind of serious discussion we need to have".

It is unclear what the sticking points will be for Peters, a politician who has served in previous National and Labour governments. "I told you a certain thing and you misinterpreted it".

The South Pacific nation has been in political limbo since the September 23 polls failed to deliver a clear majority for either conservative Prime Minister Bill English or opposition leader Jacinda Ardern. Like the other party leaders, he considers the content of the negotiations to be confidential.

The Greens, who must be part of a Labour-led government to make up the numbers, took no part in the negotiations with NZ First.

"New Zealand First values transparency but we also value an individual's privacy especially when they volunteer their services". "It's a given that this process should take some time".

"I think we need to be patient, we're looking at another two to three days before a decision", Dann says.

Under New Zealand's proportional voting system, larger parties must typically form alliances with smaller parties to govern.

After the negotiation meetings ended, the NZ First caucus went into a late-night meeting to draw up documents detailing the deals offered by National and Labour.