EIGHT residents became Australian citizens in a ceremony held on September 21.

Calling Australia home: Camellia Chooi, Aura Fitzpatrick, Wai Ming Ho,Port Macquarie Hastings Council mayor Peter Besseling, John Cosgrave, Matthew King, Edmund Swan and Duc Long Nguyen.

Calling Australia home: Camellia Chooi, Aura Fitzpatrick, Wai Ming Ho,Port Macquarie Hastings Council mayor Peter Besseling, John Cosgrave, Matthew King, Edmund Swan and Duc Long Nguyen.

EIGHT residents became Australian citizens in a ceremony conducted by Port Macquarie-Hastings Council mayor Peter Besseling on September 21. 

The mayor welcomed the residents to the event and congratulated them on their decision to become Australians. 

The new citizens have made the choice to reside in Australia after arriving from destinations all over the world including Malaysia, Republic of Ireland, South Africa, The Philippines, Hong Kong, United Kingdom and Vietnam. 

Mr Besseling said that the Australian ideals of mateship and maintaining a stable democracy were evident in Port Macquarie. 

Each citizen made a pledge to respect the country’s rights and liberties, democratic beliefs and to obey and uphold laws. 

The new citizens received their official certificates and a coin to commemorate the occasion. 

Mr Besseling said the ceremony gave people the opportunity to reflect on the meaning of being Australian whether through choice or by birth. 

Duc Long Nguyen has been in Australia for 13 years after arriving from Saigon, Vietnam. 

He is now 28-years-old and said he is enjoying living in Port Macquarie where ‘everyone is so nice’. 

Mr Nguyen works as an accountant, which involves travelling to Sydney. 

“I love coming back to town where everything is so close, it takes 10 minutes to drive anywhere,” he said. 

Camellia Chooi arrived in Australia from Malaysia and said becoming a citizen is a ‘very big event’. 

“I’m very proud and honoured to be allowed to come to this beautiful country,” she said. 

Ms Chooi has been in Port Macquarie for two years and plans to raise a family in the town. 

The eight new citizens are Camellia Chooi (Malaysia), Aura Fitzpatrick (The Philippines), Wai Ming Ho (Hong Kong), John Cosgrave (Republic of Ireland), Matthew King (United Kingdom), Edmund Swan (Republic of Ireland), Jacques De Haan (South Africa) and Duc Long Nguyen (Vietnam). 

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