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First Republic Day

The Republican Movement has declared tomorrow, Monday, to be a public holiday as the first Republic Day.

Republic Day, known anachronistically till now as Queen’s Birthday, will be celebrated on the first Monday of June each year.

“We want to give people a chance to celebrate the New Zealand republic. We looked around at all the existing holidays and saw they had a special meaning, like ANZAC Day or Waitangi Day. And on New Year’s Day, people just aren’t in the right frame of mind to think about the big issues”, said Dave Guerin, Republican Movement president.

“Then we saw Queen’s Birthday and realised it was perfect for Republic Day. No one celebrates Queen’s Birthday at the moment. It’s just a day off for most people, perhaps coming in handy when the ski-fields open early.”

“Queen’s Birthday is not even the Queen’s birthday. That’s almost as ridiculous as taking a day off to celebrate an aristocrat’s birthday in the first place.”

“Even the Governor-General has no official engagements on Queen’s Birthday. If the Queen’s employee in New Zealand can’t be bothered doing anything on the day, there must be an opening for Republic Day.”

Republic Day will not be a big party day until New Zealand actually becomes a republic, so the Republican Movement has come up with a few activities to mark the day.

- Talk amongst your friends and family about who you would vote in as our president.

- Read the American Constitution and reflect on its concept of power emanating from the people. Ring a constitutional lawyer to help you find the New Zealand Constitution, then see if you can understand it.

- Pick any family in New Zealand and identify what their qualifications would be for running the country. Compare it to the royal family and see which comes out best. Discuss whether either family makes the grade.

- Just go out and enjoy yourself with fellow New Zealanders. In the end, Republic Day is about us - you don’t have to celebrate a British citizen’s fictitious birthday.


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