“I’m announcing the election date well in advance as I believe this gives New Zealanders some certainty and is in the country’s best interests,” he said.

Gaffe-prone Key said that his conservative National Party “will be campaigning strongly on its record in government and plans to continue the good progress New Zealand is making”.

It currently leads opinion polls.

“As a country, we’ve been dealing with economic shocks and earthquakes on top of inherited fiscal deficits,” Key said.

“Working together we are rebuilding Christchurch, our economy and our finances. New Zealand is now heading in the right direction again — I’m proud of the work we’ve done.”

And politicians might not be the only thing Kiwis vote for when they go to the polls. Key said he would make an announcement later this week on whether New Zealand would hold a referendum alongside the election on changing the national flag and ditching the Union Jack.


Image via Getty