Penrith welcomes new citizens on Australia Day

Viswa Nandamuri, Sowjnya Mukkamala, Yugala Sri Na became Australian Citizens at a ceremony in Penrith on Australia Day.Viswa Nandamuri, Sowjnya Mukkamala, Yugala Sri Na have lived in Penrith for sixmonths after moving from Parramatta.

As a family they became Australian citizensat a ceremony at the civic centre on Australia Day.

Mr Nandumuri said they were very happy in Australia.

”It’s a lovely country,” he said.

”We know how good it is. Government looks after its people and we are very happy here. We grew to love this Penrith area after moving here.”

Penrith held a special Australia Day citizenship ceremony today as people from all parts of the globe too the oath of allegiance.

Over 70 people became citizens, with family and friends packing out the council chamber, including the upstairs balcony viewing area.

It was an occasion of warm smiles, cheering and celebration as people declared Australia as the country they now call home.

Kevin Rutemba (first on the left) and Laurence Mukabasinga (middle) became citizens and have family there to support them on Australia Day.

Kevin Rutemba andLaurence Mukabasinga are part of the same extended family who live inClaremontMeadows.

They’ve lived in Australia for five years now and became citizens almost as soon as the process would allow them. Their family also became citizens at earlier ceremonies.

St Marys resident, Thani Saenchaiban became an Australian citizen in an Australia Day ceremony at Penrith Civic Centre.

Thani Saenchaiban, was proud to become a citizen in Penrith after buying ahouse in St Marys two years ago.

Ramez Bishara, Sherry Melika, Daniel Bishara, David Bishara became Australian citizens as a family.

Ramez Bishara, Sherry Melika, Daniel Bishara, David Bishara have lived as a family in St Clair for five years now.

”It feels like home now – we just want to be Aussies,” Mr Bishara said.

Mario Amorada and his son Giro became citizens together.

Originally from the PhilippinesMario Amorada and his son Giro became citizens together after living in Glenmore Park for five years.

Each year over 800 people become citizens of Australia in a number ofPenrith citizenship ceremonies.

Countries people came from in today’s group of citizens includedBangladesh, Iran, Philippines, Egypt, Scotland, Sudan, India, Bhutan, Malaysia, Ireland, Nepal, Zimbabwe, the United Kingdom, Pakistan, Thailand, South Africa, Fiji, Tanzania, Rwanda, Sri Lanka, United States, China andJamaica.

In a speech, Penrith’s Australia Day ambassador, ex-Wallabies player and coach, Jim Williams,said Australia is the country it is because of the land and it’s people.

He said the land we live on is beautiful and demanding and the people that live on it are constantly adapting and changing to make the most of it.

Mr Williams also presented each new citizen with a sprig of bottlebrush.

Each new citizen was welcomed by andreceived official certificates and paper work from Penrith Mayor, Ross Fowler and Lindsay MP Fiona Scott.

Also in attendance were Penrith councillorsJackie Greenow,John Thain,Greg Davies,Bernard Bratusa,Kevin Crameri and Prue Car.

Penrith MP Stuart Ayres and Mulgoa MP Tanya Davies were also present.

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