Citizens celebrate Irish-style with a nice cuppa
COVERS of Amy Winehouse and Michael Buble songs, a tin whistle solo and a member of the audience invited up to conduct the theme from Ghostbusters.
This stuff didn't happen on Alan Shatter's watch, when the Citizenship Ceremonies were a much more formal affair.
But it was practically a party after the Garda Band pulled out all the stops to cover up the late arrival of Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald with an impromptu session at the Convention Centre in Dublin.
Candidates for the citizenship ceremony clapped along and cheered as Lekan Akinyemi, originally from Nigeria but now an Irish citizen living in Kilkenny, was ushered up on stage to conduct the Ghostbusters theme.
The raucous atmosphere calmed down for the formal part of the event, as the Minister finally appeared some minutes late. There was applause as she welcomed the new citizens as part of a family whose Irish passport will be "amazingly welcome all over the world".
"While Ireland has sent its people all over the world, Ireland has never invaded anywhere, never sought to enslave or occupy," she said.
Elette Ebengho (21) from Nigeria, who came to live in Cork 16 years ago with her family and is now a trainee pharmacist said she was going home to celebrate in true Irish style - with a cup of tea.
Delighted family, Margaret and David Woloszyk from Poland, here with their daughter Olivia (6) were over the moon to have their citizenship signed, sealed and delivered as they await the arrival of their new baby due yesterday.
"Dublin is our home now. Olivia speaks Irish and plays camogie," he said.
Rodney and Hazel Dalmeida, originally from Karnataka in southern India but have been living in Donegal for the past seven years were celebrating their citizenship - while lamenting the loss of the Sam Maguire.