|The New Zealand government structure is a constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary democracy. What that basically means is that there is a democratically elected government in place that runs the country, yet the Queen of England is the head of state. The Queen does however not “run the show” here and the position is largely a ceremonial one.
New Zealand is thus in a very unique position where it actually has two national anthems : “God defend New Zealand” and “God save the Queen”. “God save the Queen” is however very very seldom sung and “God defend New Zealand” is the anthem you will hear sung at events. “God defend New Zealand” consists of 5 verses. Very few New Zealanders will know all five though as traditionally only the first verse is sung – first in Maori, then repeated in English.
One interesting part of this association with England is that every year several Kiwis are knighted for service to the Queen and country.
The capital of New Zealand is situated in Wellington. The house of parliament is called the Beehive.
The national flag consists of a blue background with the Union Jack in the top left hand quarter and four red stars representing the Southern Cross star constellation in the right hand half. Because of the flag’s similarity to that of Australia there is a drive to change the flag to a more uniquely Kiwi one. Other national symbols commonly used are the silver fern and the kiwi.
This is a typical exchange you will find in Parliament