Australia Day Citizens Ceremonies – an electioneering platform?

It is blatantly obvious Liverpool City Councils’ Citizenship Ceremonies have become an electioneering platform for the Mayor and his Team.
Previously, these Ceremonies were conducted by Council Staff, however, since Mayor Mannouns’ election in 2021, his Team of Liberal Councillors have taken over tasks such as announcing the Citizens names, handing out Certificates and directing the new Citizens for photo shoots with the Mayor, Deputy Mayor and Liberal Councillors.

That practice amounts to electioneering aimed at vulnerable Citizens that may be biassed towards those Councillors at the next election scheduled for September this year.
The current procedure does not fully comply with the Australian Citizenship Act and Regulations 2007

Section 226 of the Local Government Act 1993 provides that the role of the Mayor is to carry out the civic and ceremonial functions of the Mayoral Office as below;

  • Citizenship Ceremonies

Citizenship ceremonies will be conducted monthly in accordance with the Australian Citizenship Ceremonies Code. Following each Citizenship Ceremony an alcohol free reception will be held for all candidates and their guests. Other invitees shall include, but is not limited to, all current Councillors and State and Federal Members of Parliament.

This blatant display of electioneering, using ratepayer resources, needs to stop and the Minister for Local Government, the NSW Electoral Commission and the Department of Immigration need to investigate this unprofessional practice.

Cllr Peter Harle JP

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