Winston Peters has again emerged as a kingmaker after New Zealand's general election on Saturday.
Winston Peters has again emerged as a kingmaker after New Zealand's general election on Saturday. KAREN SWEENEY

NZ election result hinges on Veteran MP's decision

NEW Zealand First party leader Winston Peters has emerged as the kingmaker after the country's general election on Saturday.

The provisional results show the incumbent National Party garnering 46% of the vote (58 seats), Labour 35.8% (45 seats), NZ First 7.5% (nine seats) and the Greens' 5.9% (seven seats).

Yesterday, Mr Peters said he was yet to speak with National leader Bill English or Labour's Jacinda Ardern, but he would deal with the matter "responsibly", talk to his colleagues "and then let you know what I'm going to do".

Newstalk ZB's political editor Barry Soper said he had spoken to people close to Mr Peters and nobody should take it for granted he would go for National.

If Mr Peters elects to form a coalition with Labour, it would also require the support of the Greens.

Ms Ardern told reporters she was confident a three-party coalition could provide stable government, although it would have only a one-seat majority.

She was due to have talks with Greens co-leader James Shaw yesterday afternoon but said it was clear Mr Peters wanted some time.

Mr Peters, 72, has been a kingmaker before, siding with National after the 1996 election and with Labour in 2005.



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