University and City Council welcome new Britons

Posted on Thursday 18th November 2010

More than 100 Birmingham residents will be formally welcomed to the UK at a special citizenship ceremony being held at the University of Birmingham.

The ceremony, which has been organised by the Department of Political Science and International Studies (POLSIS) and Birmingham City Council, will be led by Christine Parkes, Peripatetic Deputy Superintendent Registrar, who will present the new Britons with their certificates of citizenship after swearing the Oath of Allegiance.

Professor Colin Thain, Head of Political Science and International Studies, at the University of Birmingham, said: “We are pleased to be hosting the event this year. It’s of particular interest to students and staff who are carrying out research in the areas of integration, international migration, participation, citizenship and ethnicity. It will give them a realistic idea about what participation is all about, how the process works and provide real life case study material.”

Dr. José Lingna Nafafé, former student and current lecturer in the Department of Political Science and International Studies, who gained UK citizenship earlier this year, said: “I’ve lived in the UK for over 20 years and took the decision to become a British citizen because I would like to be acknowledged fully as a member of the British community in Birmingham. For me to be a citizen of this great country means not only to be welcomed by all parties that represent it, but also to be conferred the right to participate fully in civic society.”

Ms Parkes said: “Birmingham is a multi-cultural and multi-faith city. I don't say multi-racial because we are all one race, the human race. I am proud to be able to extend this welcome to you and to confer the honor of citizenship upon you. "

Applicants who apply for UK citizenship status must first pass a series of modules testing their English, cultural knowledge and aspects of UK law. People who are granted UK citizenship are awarded UK citizenship after swearing the Oath of Allegiance to the Queen and promising to be a loyal citizen.

The event will start at 10:30am on 22nd November, in the Great Hall at the University of Birmingham and is open to students, academic staff and candidate families.

Also attending the event is Councillor Chaudhry Abdul Rashid JP, Professor Michael Sheppard, Provost and Vice-Principal of the University of Birmingham and Professor Colin Thain, Head of POLSIS.

To find out more or book your free ticket for the event, contact: Dr. José Lingna Nafafé (POLSIS) tel 0121 414 2784 or email J.Lingnanafafe@bham.ac.uk, or contact Ms Julie Zacaroli email: zacarojd@adf.bham.ac.uk

For media information contact Kali Tiwana, University Press Office, tel 0121 414 6029.