New Zealand to welcome 24 new Kiwis on Waitangi Day

Sir Jerry Mateparae will host a ceremony at Government House in Auckland. Photo / Warren Buckland
Sir Jerry Mateparae will host a ceremony at Government House in Auckland. Photo / Warren Buckland

New Zealand will welcome 24 new citizens at Government House tomorrow and acknowledge more than 27,000 others who were granted citizenship last year.

Jeff Montgomery, a spokesman for the Department of Internal Affairs, said choosing to be a Kiwi was a big decision, especially if an individual had to give up their original citizenship or links to another country.

In 2015, more than 500 citizenship ceremonies were held by local authorities across New Zealand.

A special citizenship ceremony is often held on Waitangi Day and tomorrow the Governor-General, Sir Jerry Mateparae, will host a ceremony at Government House in Auckland for 24 people to become New Zealand citizens. Citizenship ceremonies will also be taking place on Waitangi Day in Hamilton and at Onuku Marae in Akaroa.

"The Waitangi Day ceremony provides a visible link between New Zealand's founding document and modern day citizenship.

The people who are attending these ceremonies with friends and family will remember it as a very special day," Mr Montgomery said.

Last year, the DIA launched Choice Whiriwhiria -- the New Zealand Citizenship Story book -- a book given to each new citizen following their ceremony. It provides a special memento of the occasion as well as providing stories and information about being a New Zealand citizen and information about the importance of the Treaty of Waitangi.

- NZ Herald

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