Despite hopes among the Yes campaign, special votes failed to flip the results of the cannabis referendum.
Recreational cannabis will remain illegal, with 50.7 per cent voting “no” and 48.4 per cent voting “yes”.
With the final tally of about 500,000 special votes released on Friday, a total of 50.7 per cent of people voted against the Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill, making the vote much closer than the 53 per cent against on the first count.
Preliminary results released a week earlier showed 53.1 per cent of votes against the Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill, and 46.1 per cent in support.
* Recreational cannabis remains illegal in New Zealand as special votes fail to flip results
* Greens have been largely left on the grass
* Cannabis referendum: What now for the law and police?
Devastation and anger at emotional results party
There was a hushed silence and a nervous inhale of breath in the office of the NZ Drug Foundation.
The crowd in the room…