Fremantle to host citizenship ceremonies on Australia Day after Federal Govt pressure

Fremantle Mayor Dr. Brad Pettitt with One Day in Fremantle participants Dr Richard Walley OAM, Gina Williams and John Butler.
Fremantle Mayor Dr. Brad Pettitt with One Day in Fremantle participants Dr Richard Walley OAM, Gina Williams and John Butler.

THE City of Fremantle has caved to a week of Federal Government pressure, moving their citizenship ceremony back to January 26.

The City announced this morning that new citizens will be able to take part in a ceremony at the Town Hall on Australia Day after Assistant Minister for Immigration and Boarder Protection Alex Hawke told them in a letter earlier this week that they would not be able to hold it during the One Day in Fremantle event on January 28.

One Day in Fremantle will continue as planned, the City replacing the citizenship ceremony with an informal recognition of the migrants who had made Fremantle home over the years.

Mayor Brad Pettitt said the decision to provide a culturally inclusive event on January 28 was never about the timing of the citizenship ceremony.

“It was included in the One Day program as we felt that new citizens would enjoy the opportunity to be welcomed to our community at such a large and exciting event,” he said.

“While the feedback from new citizens was that they would be happy to be conferred citizenship at the One Day event, the Federal Government has not supported a ceremony on this date.

“The City will write to all new citizens to inform them of the option of attending the ceremony on January 26, or the following ceremony on March 14, 2017.

“We welcome Australians celebrating, in whichever way they see fit, the wonderful and diverse place in which we live.”