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Wairoa’s newest Kiwis


Wairoa welcomed its newest Kiwis at an official citizenship ceremony last week.

Mayor Craig Little and Deputy Mayor Denise Eaglesome-Karekare presented Sanjesh and Laleshni Kumar, Mark Champion and Donna Soledad-Jaunola with their certificates of New Zealand citizenship by completing the formal citizenship ceremony and welcoming them as New Zealand citizens.

“On behalf of the Government and the people of New Zealand in general, and the citizens of Wairoa District in particular, I welcome you here today for the purpose of taking the Oath of Allegiance to Her Majesty the Queen, and completing the necessary formalities to make you a citizen of New Zealand.”

“It takes great courage to leave the country of your birth and it takes even greater wisdom to call New Zealand and Wairoa your home”, said Mr Little.

Family and friends also gathered at Wairoa District Council’s Chambers to share in the ceremony.

Originally from the United Kingdom, Mark Champion has been in New Zealand for 18 years with six of those years here in Wairoa.

“It’s great that my citizenship has been confirmed. I feel a greater sense of connection to my family and to New Zealand now.”

“My family tell me that I have to support the All Blacks given that I’m a true blue kiwi now”, says Mr Champion.

Laleshni Kumar originally from Fiji found the citizenship ceremony quite emotional.

“It was actually quite emotional, because you feel like you really belong and Wairoa has been so good to us and is our home”

“It was great to go through the ceremony and have our citizenship all confirmed”, says Mrs Kumar.

Donna Soledad-Juanola who was born in the Philippines, says “it is so special, I get to experience the lifestyle and get to be with awesome people and now I not only get to call New Zealand my home, I also get to call it my country.”


For more information:

Kitea Tipuna
Communications Strategist
Wairoa District Council
(06) 838 7309

31 October 2018

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