Glad to become Kiwis
A spur of the moment decision brought the Uniral family to Marlborough, and now they are putting down roots, with father-of-three, Nazer Uniral, becoming a New Zealand citizen at a ceremony at the Marlborough District Council on Friday.
Mayor Alistair Sowman welcomed the 28 new citizens to New Zealand on behalf of the district and the country.
"We hope that you find happiness in your new home," he said.
The mayor said that this ceremony had had the largest number of people sworn in at any one time in Blenheim.
Nazer Uniral said he and wife, Adjani, moved to Auckland from the Philippines seven years ago.
Their three children, Yvanna, 6, Daniel, 4, and Ross, 2 months, were all born in New Zealand.
Mrs Uniral said the decision to move to Blenheim three years ago had happened quite suddenly.
"We came here for a holiday during the garden festival in November and we just thought, ‘Right, we have to move here'.
"It is about the quiet life. It is great for the kids and all the playgrounds are very close."
Mr Uniral works from home as a computer engineer, while Mrs Uniral is a nurse at Hospice Marlborough.
The family are looking forward to visiting family in Auckland for Christmas, Mr Uniral said.
"Christmas is big for Filipinos, we feast on food. Back in the Philippines the celebrations start in September and go through to January," he said.
The Marlborough residents who became citizens on Friday are:
Luisa Arasi, Matavai McKelvey, Fatu Lofa Fatu (Samoa);
Catherine Elizabeth Brownlee, Troy Jordan James Brownlee, Susanne Joy Brickstock Kesby, Robert Paul Kesby, Judith Anne Lovejoy, Jill Susan Newman, Barry Newman, Katherine Mary Grage, Christopher Ian Grage, Conrad Henry Beale, Katrina Louise Lange, Frederick Paul Leeds and Teresa Besley (Britain);
Theresa Anne Cannon, Catherine Jane Speedy (Australia);
Gidon Cadiz Nicholls and Nazer Nunal Uniral (the Philippines);
John Peter Samuelson and Leana Samuelson (South Africa);
Robert Coleman Pressey, Melissa Maria Scalera and Michael Coleman Pressey (United States);
Jeong Su Jeon (Korea).
- The Marlborough Express