We had to show a identity document and were then given a form to complete for automatic voting enrolment and then we took our places.
|Inside the hall at the City of Canning council|
The presentation started with a welcome to all new citizens, then the opening address by the Mayor - Mr Paul Ng, who talked about what it represents to become an Australian.
After a few speeches from other members of the Council, we were called up by groups as laid out in the procedure leaflet - we were in the second group.
The Mayor then read out the Australian Citizenship Affirmation and holding up our right hand we repeated the pledge after him.
We were then handed our certificates and went along to the end of the room to get a native pot plant and a commemorative coin.
I had to laugh, as in the first group there were 3 or 4 people who didn't know their right from their left and had in fact their left hand in the air, don't know if they were too nervous and just mimicked the Mayor who was facing them.
|The Mayor, Mr Paul Ng|
There were over 40 people of 18 different nationalities that swore allegiance to Australia in that ceremony.
After the 4 groups had gone through, everyone sang the Australian National Anthem, and then there was a closing address.
To end the ceremony one of the members of the council made us all laugh with a quiz about Australian slang words and those who answered correctly were given a chocolate.
|The second group taking the pledge|
Holding our pot plants, certificate and coin
|With the Mayor|
Each family was entitled to take 2 guests and we had invited a couple who we've known for 34 years and who were actually the ones who invited us to Australia.
Since it was almost dinner time by the time it was all finished, the 4 of us went to dinner at a restaurant just a couple of blocks away to commemorate.
After 11 years in the country, it finally happened!
Apart from being able to vote, getting called for jury duty and being able to work for the Government (preference to citizens) and of course having to apply for an Australian passport to travel, nothing much changes for us.
Luckily for Portuguese citizens you are entitled to have more than one citizenship and still keep your Portuguese passport which comes in handy as it avoids having to apply for visas to visit certain countries.
Certain countries like India don't allow their citizens to hold dual citizenship...
|The City of Canning council building|