'It's such a good life': New citizens reflect on becoming Canadian

At a citizenship ceremony at the Manitoba Legislature today, 25 people from 11 different nations became Canadian citizens.

25 people from 11 different nations became Canadian citizens today at the Manitoba Legislature

Twenty-five new Canadians took their citizenship oaths at the Legislature today. The province says approximately 10,000 immigrants become Canadian citizens in Manitoba each year. (CBC)

Twenty-five new Canadians took the Oath of Allegiance and received their citizenship certificates, along with a special Manitoba welcome package, at a ceremony at the Manitoba Legislature Wednesday.

Divya Kaeley moved to Canada from India in 2012 with her husband and six-year-old son. She says her family loves every part of being Canadian.

"It's such a good life," said Kaeley, who added her family is very thankful they chose Canada.

"When I came to Canada I did my research on the internet and I think it's one of the best countries for women. And I really feel that. The freedoms that we get in terms of expression of thought, opinion, religious freedom, freedom to do anything that you want to do. Freedom of expression in the workplace. Opportunities for newcomers. I think it's a great country."
Divya Kaeley and her husband, Narinder Pahwa, hold up their new Canadian citizenship certificates. (CBC)

Bilisa Shune is originally from Ethiopia and lived in Kenya for five years before moving to Canada in 2011. She had family in Ontario who helped her get sponsored by the government. She said becoming a Canadian means more than words can explain.

"It's special to be [in] Canada. Canada is nice country, where you can make your life better and you live peaceful life," said Shune.

Shune knows people who live in the U.S. In light of the travel ban which came into effect last week, she says she doesn't like what's happening there right now and is especially thankful to be in Canada.

"You live your life, which is peaceful, safe and secure. You don't worry, you just live your life," said Shune.
Bilisa Shune, who left her home country of Ethiopia, said Canada is a special place. (CBC)

While Shune is happy to be here and now a Canadian citizen, she said she still worries about her large family back home, who she said aren't living in a safe or secure place.

Premier Brian Pallister and Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman were on hand at today's citizenship ceremony at the Manitoba Legislature.

The premier talked about the province being a hopeful place to build a new life and thanked each of the new Canadians for choosing to build their new lives in Manitoba.

Each year, roughly 10,000 immigrants become Canadian citizens in Manitoba.