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 Governor-General of New Zealand

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PostSubject: Governor-General of New Zealand   Sun Nov 28, 2010 2:44 am

The Governor-General of New Zealand (Māori: Te Kawana Tianara o Aotearoa) is the representative of the monarch of New Zealand (currently, Queen Elizabeth II). The Governor-General acts as the Queen's vice-regal representative in New Zealand and is often viewed as the de facto head of state.[2][3][4]

The Constitution Act 1986 provides that a "Governor-General appointed by the Sovereign is the Sovereign's representative in New Zealand." There is no specific term, but by convention the Governor-General usually serves for approximately five years. The office's full title is: The Governor-General and Commander-in-Chief in and over New Zealand.

The functions and roles of the Governor-General are set out in letters patent issued in 1983 (amended in 2006)[5] constituting the office of the Governor-General, and include appointing ministers and judges, dissolving Parliament, granting assent to legislation, issuing writs for elections and bestowing honours. All the Governor-General's duties are carried out in the name of The Queen. Beyond constitutional functions, the Governor-General has an important ceremonial role. He or she travels widely throughout New Zealand to open conferences, attend services and commemorations. When travelling abroad, the Governor-General is seen as the representative of New Zealand, and of the Queen of New Zealand, and is treated as a head of state in most ways. Under the Niue Constitution Act, the Governor-General also represents the Queen in Niue.

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