New year and new citizens for Waitaki and New Zealand

Published on 22 February 2024

Citizenship Feb 24.jpg

Waitaki welcomed fourteen new New Zealand citizens at a ceremony on Tuesday this week.

Hailing from The Phillipines, South Africa, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Belgium, Ukraine, India and Malaysia – the first citizenship ceremony of 2024 highlighted the diversity of our region.

Students from Oamaru Intermediate School’s Pasifika group welcomed the new citizens, their families and friends, with waiata.

The ceremony was led by Waitaki District Mayor Gary Kircher and Deputy Mayor Hana Halalele who was assisted by Councillors Hopkins, McCone and Ryan.

The new citizens took an oath or affirmation of allegiance, and were presented with a citizenship pack and a native hebe plant.

The ceremony then showed a welcome video from Governor General Dame Cindy Kiro, before the Oamaru Intermediate Students and the attendees sang the National Anthem.

Mayor Gary Kircher: “These ceremonies are truly special occasions and it’s a huge privilege to be part of such a significant time in people’s lives. I’m proud to show just how welcoming our country is to those who come to live here. Choosing to become a New Zealand citizen is something we should all celebrate”

The ceremony ended with an afternoon tea, and completed the welcome for the new citizens.