Former Labour MP Carmel Sepuloni may have dropped the Waitakere fight for now, but looks likely to pick up where she left off in three years time.

Labour confirmed today it would not be seeking an electoral petition for the tightly-contested Waitakere and Chrischurch Central seats.

National's Paula Bennett led the race for the Waitakere electorate by 349 votes on election night, but lost it to Ms Sepuloni after special votes gave the Labour candidate an 11-vote advantage.

Ms Bennett reclaimed the seat with a margin of nine votes after she requested a judicial recount.


Ms Sepuloni said today the decision not to keep fighting the result was a relief.

"It would have taken months, and I was quite happy with the process and felt that it had been fair,'' she told APNZ.

"It's not the end of the world, I can go and do something else. I'm very priviledged to have been an MP, especially at the age of 31 when I got in.''

Ms Sepuloni said the seat was winnable for Labour in 2014, and there was a good chance she would be back.

"You can't really commit to that 100 per cent three years out, you never know what's going to happen, but it is likely.''

In the Christchurch Central electorate, National's Nicky Wagner and Labour's Brendan Burns were tied for votes on election night, but Ms Wagner came out on top when the special vote count gave her lead of 45. She extended her lead by two votes in a recount.

Labour general secretary Chris Flatt said the decision not to seek a petition was made after looking at previous cases and talking to the people involved in the recounts.

Previous petitions had ranged in cost from $50,000 to $120,000, and Mr Flatt said although cost was not the sole reason for not pursuing the matter it was a key factor.