Waipā welcomes new citizens
Almost 200 new citizens from 30 different nations formally made Waipā their home in New Zealand last year.
Waipā District Council mayor Jim Mylchreest conducted eight citizenship ceremonies in 2019, welcoming citizens from Britain, South Africa, Belgium, Cambodia, China, India, America and Australia, among others.
Mylchreest said of those new citizens, 113 had settled in Cambridge, 72 in Te Awamutu and 12 in Ōhaupō and Pirongia.
“We have a beautiful district and a wonderful, inclusive community, so I’m sure these families will be very happy here. New citizens bring with them a wealth of experience and knowledge so we embrace what they have to offer.”
Mylchreest said Britons, South Africans, Indians, Fijians and Filipinos were the top five nationalities to have settled in Waipā over the past 10 years.
“We have also welcomed many Zimbabwean, Dutch, Samoan, American and Australian citizens to Waipā over the last decade. In total we have had more than 2,060 new citizens from 85 different countries since 2002.”
The number of new citizens is expected to grow this year with the Department of Internal Affairs introducing online applications for citizenship by grant.
Mylchreest said the changes would dramatically speed up the application process, making it easier for immigrants to apply to become citizens.