Macarthur MP definitely not a dual citizen

Macarthur MP Dr Michael Freelander. Picture: Ann Warr
Macarthur MP Dr Michael Freelander. Picture: Ann Warr

The dual citizenship saga may have claimed the scalps of five federal MPs, but Macarthur MP Dr Michael Freelander has assured the Advertiser his position in Parliament is safe.

Five MPs were ousted last Friday after the high court ruled they were in breach with section 44 of the constitution which stated they could have no “allegiance, obedience, or adherence to a foreign power”.

Today, it was revealed Senate President Stephen Parry (Liberal) may also be a dual citizen.

However, Dr Freelander (Labor) said his situation was crystal clear.

“I am completely safe, there is no doubt whatsoever,” he said.

“Both my parents were born in Australia, my maternal grandfather was born in Fiji but became an Australian citizen and my paternal grandfather was born in England but became an Australian citizen.

“I was actually vetted by the Labor Party as well.”

Dr Freelander said the dual citizenship controversy had been a “big distraction” for federal MPs.

“It could have been avoided if they were vetted before the election” he said.

“We have far more important things to focus on.”

Ousted: Former deputy leader Barnaby Joyce. Picture: AAP/Perry Duffin.

Ousted: Former deputy leader Barnaby Joyce. Picture: AAP/Perry Duffin.

The ousted MPs were Barnaby Joyce and Fiona Nash (both Nationals), Scott Ludlam and Larissa Waters (both Greens) and Malcolm Roberts (One Nation).

Dr Freelander said he felt for four of the five MPs.

“The only one that I am glad to see the back of is Malcolm Roberts,” he said.

“He didn’t add anything to Parliament apart from comic relief.”