There were plenty of smiles, fist pumps and "woohoos" as Rotorua residents officially became Kiwis this week.

A citizenship ceremony was held on Tuesday at the Rotorua Lakes Council building.

To open the ceremony, pupils from Ngongotahā Primary School performed several kapa haka items.

A total of 28 new Kiwis were welcomed, with Filipino, Vietnamese, Indian, French, British, Fijian, Thai, Slovenian and Laotian origins.


During the ceremony, Rotorua mayor Steve Chadwick said the council loved that the welcome for the new citizens was kapa haka items by Rotorua pupils, and that a number of cultures were now part of local school's waiata and kapa haka groups.

She says a citizenship ceremony is held in Rotorua every month now, with an average of 30 new citizens.

Veronica Dugue, from the Philippines, says she has been in New Zealand for about seven years and Rotorua for two of those years.

She is a nurse and came to Rotorua for work.

She then met her partner and they got married in Tauranga in November last year.

Veronica says she enjoys living here because everyone is friendly and it is refreshing.

"I think we are lucky here in Rotorua, there's always something happening."

She says it is also great there are a lot of tourist destinations in Rotorua which are so close and that you can get local discounts for.

Rotorua residents becoming Kiwi citizens sit with friends and family at the ceremony. Photo / Supplied
Rotorua residents becoming Kiwi citizens sit with friends and family at the ceremony. Photo / Supplied

Gurnam Singh from India says he has been in Rotorua for nine years and is currently the head chef at Zippy Central Cafe.

He says Rotorua is beautiful with lovely people and everything is easy to access.

Harpreet Kaur, originally from India, says it has been an exciting few weeks for her and her husband, having become New Zealand citizens and having their 6-week-old baby girl Amreen.

"It feels very unreal and dreamy, but at the end of the day dreams come true."

Prince Chohan, also originally from India, says he has been in Rotorua since 2009.

A couple of the things he described Rotorua and New Zealand as was a "land of opportunity and a dream fulfiller".

Rotorua's new Kiwis
Ashly Atchico (Philippines)
Hue Chu (Vietnam)
Jatinder Dhaliwal (India)
Harpreet Kaur (India)
Veronica Duque (Philippines)
Edward Heath (Philippines)
Katrina Koppin (Philippines)
Michael Koppin (Philippines)
Marie-Joo Le Guen (France)
Mark Mogg (Britain)
Charlotte Mogg (Britain)
John Peters (Fiji)
Michelle Peters (Fiji)
Leonie Peters (Fiji)
Julianna Peters (Fiji)
Gurnam Singh (India)
Sanjit Singh (Fiji)
Nilam Singh (Fiji)
Penpit Suwanaposee (Thailand)
Deepa Tom (India)
Arun George (India)
Michael Burton (Britain)
Prince Chohan (India)
Kruti Desai (India)
Angela Lloyd (Britain)
Barry Marshall (Britian)
Spela Marshall (Slovenia)
Lotchana Sivilay (Laos)