The Philippine Consulate General in Melbourne’s newly arrived Consul General Maria Lourdes M. Salcedo administered the oath of allegiance to dual citizens in ceremonies held on 10 December 2020 at the temporary office of the Consulate.

The Consulate continues to process dual citizenship applications and provide other consular services while complying with health regulations imposed by the Victorian government. As the epicenter of Australia’s second wave of COVID-19 cases, Victoria went into hard lockdown for 111 days from mid-July to 28 October 2020.

With travel and physical distance restrictions imposed, the Consulate adopted an appointment system to limit the number of applicants coming to the premises. Applicants with urgent concerns including the elderly are prioritized.

Consul General Salcedo said the Consulate opened in December 2019, there have been 124 applicants for dual citizenship who took their oath of allegiance upon approval of their applications.

During a staff meeting, ConGen Salcedo discussed with the Consulate staff some measures to zero out the backlog on dual citizenship and other consular applications that piled up during the pandemic.

She also said that the oath-taking ceremony on dual citizenship felt nostalgic as she recalled her official trip to Melbourne in 2004 as a Vice Consul at the Embassy in Canberra to preside over similar rites for overseas Filipinos in Victoria following the passage of the Dual Citizenship Law or RA 9225 in 2003. END

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