|I wonder what will spin out from this, RNZAF regaining an air combat capability instance? Wasn't the RNZN interested in aquiring a couple of Collins in the early days, might the Collins replacement be of interest now?
The Australian November 08, 2008
NEW Zealand will have a new centre-right government with a National Party coalition winning today's general election.
Prime Minister Helen Clarke has phoned National leader John Key and conceded the election.
It brings to an end the nine-year-old government of Helen Clark's Labour Party.
With most of the vote counted, the centre-right National Party led by former foreign exchange dealer John Key had 46 per cent of the vote, which would translate to 59 seats in the 122-seat parliament.
The center-left Labor Party, which is seeking a fourth three-year term, had 33 per cent of the vote, translating to 43 seats.
"It's the fifth time I have contested an election as leader of the Labour party and I've been very proud to lead Labour... but as is obvious to all, tonight has not been our night," she told supporters.
"In politics we all experience the highs and the lows ... tonight is a night for the winners to savour, but we won't be going away."
Mr Key will need the support of minor parties to have enough seats to govern.
The results give National 59 seats and ACT 5. United Future leader Peter Dunne adds one seat, making a total of 65.
Labour has 43 seats, the Greens eight, and they are joined by Progressive Party leader Jim Anderton for a total of 52.
National has campaigned hard on a message of change, citing Barack Obama's victory in the US presidential election as a mandate for fresh approaches to tackle the global financial crisis.
Labour have campaigned on trust and the leadership of veteran Clark, the country's first elected female leader, who is still widely respected despite her party's slump in the polls.
There are about 3 million registered voters, out of a population of about 4.3 million. It is compulsory to be enrolled to vote, but voting itself is not compulsory.
Over the last three elections, voter turnout has averaged 80.9 per cent.
Reuters, AFP & agencies