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PARLIAMENT OF AUSTRALIA HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES Speech CONSTITUENCY STATEMENTS Citizenship Wednesday, 3 February 2016 Clive Palmer – Member for Fairfax Mr PALMER (Fairfax) (09:42): On Australia Day I had the privilege to preside over a citizenship ceremony held in my electorate of Fairfax at Palmwoods. Joe Kearnay of Woombye-Palmwoods Rotary donated trees. The ceremony was to naturalise 22 new citizens who had made a serious commitment to become Australians. The local community started work early at 7 am decorating the hall with large Australian flags and historic memorabilia. Local Lions clubs and Scouts set up food and drink stalls outside the hall as the community gathered to support each other and to join in the ceremony. Jenny McKay, the local councillor, and I attended, and I was fortunate to have the assistance of Mike Burns as our MC. The hall had a capacity for 400 people and, when I commenced the ceremony, it was overflowing with Australians ready to welcome our new citizens into the community. Large hampers and trees were prepared by members of the community to present to each new citizen to celebrate the occasion. This was a historic occasion for each of the candidates for citizenship and their families. It was also a historic occasion for the descendants. Citizenship was not just for those present but it would change the destiny of generations yet to be born. It was their decision but, in so doing, they were committing future generations to our country and all that it stands for. To see the smiles on the candidates’ faces, to present each of them with their naturalisation certificates, reminded me how all of us in this place and throughout the nation have a responsibility to do all that we can to make our new Australians welcome in our society. At times like this, we remember what unites us as a people. It is greater than our differences that we may have from time to time. We are not just citizens of Australia but citizens of the world. We need to remember, as a wise man once said: we are all mortal; we all live on this one small planet; we all breathe the same air; and we all want a good future for our children.’ Clive Palmer and new citizen at the Australian Citizenship Ceremony in Fairfax The Last Sentry at the Gate: Clive Palmer & the 44th Parliament of Australia 121


THe Last Sentry at the Gate 1
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