By ERIC PIET, the National PNG
A GROUP of 40 foreigners have been granted citizenship by the PNG Immigration and Citizenship Authority.
They were presented their citizenship certificates and passports in Port Moresby yesterday by Immigration and Border Security Minister Petrus Thomas.
He said the increasing number of foreigners applying and being granted citizenship showed the confidence they has in the integrity and transparency of the process. It brings to 195 the number of foreigners awarded PNG citizenship in 2018. Many are West Papuans.
Of the 40, 32 were granted dual citizenship and eight naturalised citizenship.
The 32 people include 28 from Australia, two from New Zealand, one from United States and one from Fiji.
They are either married to Papua New Guineans, invested and built their businesses in the country or have worked and lived in the country for many years.
There are 17 former PNG citizens who have resumed their PNG citizenship, 11 long-term residents and four who became citizens by descent.
The eight who have given up their other citizenship to remain in the country include a missionary couple from Ghana, two former Bangladeshis, and former citizens of Malaysia, South Korea, Turkey and the Philippines.
Safak Deliismail, from Turkey, is the principal of Paradise High School in Port Moresby. He thanked the PNG Government for granting him permanent citizenship.
“Despite the country facing many challenges, it can do much better. There are things that the world can learn from PNG and vice versa. We have to do our job diligently and patiently. I am grateful for being a humble citizen of this country and to become part of PNG’s success story in the future,”