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Monday, 8 February 2010
Page: 734

Mr IRONS (4:11 PM) —Nearly two weeks ago, we celebrated Australia Day in my electorate. Australia Day is an important day for my constituents. Many of them turn out to local council events to celebrate the day and to celebrate the swearing-in of our new citizens. Celebrations and citizenship ceremonies were held across my electorate by the City of Canning, the City of South Perth and the Town of Victoria Park. One of the best aspects of the City of South Perth’s ceremony is that it takes place on the Swan River foreshore, a very public part of Perth, where the community can be involved. In fact, during the ceremony many people out for their morning exercise stopped to take part in the event.

Gerry Ganning performed the MC duties, as usual, and there was an impressive array of distinguished guests, including His Excellency Dr Ken Michael, the Governor of Western Australia, and his wife, and the Hon. Simon O’Brien, the WA Minister for Transport. Local South Perth MLA John McGrath, Senator Alan Eggleston and MLC Nick Goiran were also in attendance.

The most important people on the day were the new Australian citizens, who took either the oath or the affirmation of allegiance. Several local personalities were nominated for the South Perth Citizen of the Year award for their contribution to the local scene, including Barry Allen for his work with the Manning Memorial Bowling Club and Manning Senior Citizens Centre; Jack Davies for his work with the Manning RSL; Lorna Dodd for her role with the Lions Help to Hear Foundation; Richard Moore for his work with the Rotary Club of Como and the South Perth Church of Christ; Roy Mouritzen for his involvement with the South Perth RSL and Concorde Nursing Home; Harold Munday of Manning RSL and Bowling Club; Roslyn Pavy of Save the Children, South of River Branch; and Albert Pollard for his involvement with the 1st Salter Point Scout Group. Congratulations must go to 85-year-old Lorna Dodd, who was a deserving winner of the overall award. Well done also to Jeremy Gillbanks, who won the Young South Perth Citizen of the Year award for his work in rehabilitating native bushland.

The Town of Victoria Park ceremony happened later in the morning and was hosted by the mayor, Trevor Vaughan. There was an impressive brass band with some good entertainment from local songwriter Bernard Carney and the Spirit of the Streets Choir. Bernard sings a song about the quokkas from Rottnest. Fortunately, I was at the back and did not have to dance with the rest of the dignitaries down the front. Congratulations to all our new citizens, including Mr Peter Betz, Miss Simrat Kaur, Mr Aminur Rahaman, Mr Junku Kin, Daniel Milner, Parveen Kumar Ponniah, Tanya Moyle, Wing Lee and Barbara Watson. I would also like to congratulate Mrs Jean Kelly, who I mentioned last week in a speech. Jean won a Town of Victoria Park Community Award.

At the City of Canning ceremony, Russell Gorton was awarded the City of Canning Local Citizen of the Year award for his work in the Canning River Wetlands. Russell is an outstanding individual who balances running his small businesses with being president of the Wilson Wetlands Action Group and taking part in environmental action. Russell and I have been working closely together on a number of local issues and he came to my office on Friday with the River Guardians to help celebrate World Wetlands Day.