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Bring the Oaths into the 21st Century

Media Release – 23 May 2004

Bring the Oaths into the 21st Century

“It’s time to bring our oaths into the 21st century and drop references to allegiance to the Queen. The Government’s discussion document on oaths is a great opportunity to set out who we are and what we believe in. New citizens and officeholders should be committing to ideas like democracy or the rule of law, not aristocrats on the other side of the world,” said Republican Movement president, Dave Guerin.

“Australians know a good oath when they see one, and they have developed a citizenship oath that really reflects modern Australia. New Australians swear to democracy, respecting rights and liberties and upholding laws, while we swear allegiance to the Queen. It may be hard to accept but the Australians have got it right!”

“Swearing allegiance to the Queen has got nothing to do with us being a monarchy, as Australia has shown. Few republics have their citizens swear allegiance to their head of state either, except in the odd dictatorship.”

“This is not republicanism by stealth either, but a pretty clear step on the road to a republic. The oaths are being reviewed because they are out of date and don’t reflect New Zealanders’ belief that power comes from the people. New Zealanders are not ready to be a republic, but they are ready to start swearing allegiance to their country, not the Queen.”

ENDS


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