Australia Deputy PM Barnaby Joyce loses seat over citizenship

27 October 2017 10:58 am - 10     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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Australia's Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce has been removed from parliament for being a New Zealander, putting the government's majority at risk.

Joyce was one of five lawmakers ruled ineligible Friday by the High Court in Canberra, but the only one from the lower house.

The Australian constitution bars citizens of foreign countries from serving in parliament. Joyce claimed he wasn't aware he held New Zealand citizenship and has since renounced it.

Joyce's removal sparks a by-election, to be held on December 2, endangering Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull's one-seat parliamentary majority and putting it at risk of an opposition-led vote of no confidence, which could spark a general election.

"It's a pretty simple story, we're off to a by-election (and) I put myself forward to the people of New England as a candidate," Joyce told reporters in his constituency, a rural part of eastern Australia, and north of Sydney.

"I had no reason to believe I was a citizen of any other country but Australia."

Speaking Friday, Turnbull said it was "clearly not the outcome we were hoping for" but denied that his government faces any instability in the absence of Joyce.

"We have the support of a majority of members," Turnbull said. A no-confidence vote would require all independent and crossbench lawmakers to turn against the government.

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  Comments - 10

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  • BuffaloaCitizen Friday, 27 October 2017 11:11 AM

    His explanations are crooked talk, he should study the Australian Constitution and abide by it. Its absolute nonsense that he did not realize he was holding NZ citizenship.

    Bala Friday, 27 October 2017 02:03 PM

    What really happened is that his parents came to Australia ages ago from NZ and by law, he therefore is a New Zealand citizen as well as his Australian birthright citizenship. He did not know it but by law even though he never applied for NZ citizenship he has automatic NZ citizenship.

    SeriouSena Saturday, 28 October 2017 12:23 AM

    Meeharakka, what is crooked is the constitutional law in Australia.

    Silva Saturday, 28 October 2017 08:17 AM

    Barbaby was born in Australia ! However the law is such that he lost the seat.

    willowsd Friday, 27 October 2017 11:33 AM

    not in sri lanka?

    Saman Friday, 27 October 2017 03:12 PM

    While, our Geetha still enjoying tax payer funded parliamentary privileges!

    Saman Friday, 27 October 2017 03:14 PM

    While our Geetha still enjoying tax payer funded parliamentary privileges.

    ceylin Friday, 27 October 2017 07:04 PM

    same thing happened to geetha in lanka.but while american citizens basil and gota do politics in lanka. via DM Android App

    sunil vijaya Saturday, 28 October 2017 02:29 AM

    we live in two joker countries - population same, corruption same (depends on scale of money), mismanaged to the hilt. a highly corrupt, gambling, alcoholic woman is the head of state and lives in england and does not even hold Australian citizenship but a person born in australia like Barnaby is denied a seat in parliament!

    Kadiya Saturday, 28 October 2017 06:29 AM

    There are some of these Joyces in Sri Lanka who rejoice their allegiance to other countries and they should be removed too!


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