Thursday, 26 January 2012 7:43 AM

Aussies Celebrate Australia Day

Australians around the world will today celebrate Australia Day.

"On Australia Day, we gather, wherever we are in the world, to celebrate what's great about being Australian," said Australia's High Commissioner to Solomon Islands, Matt Andersen.

"As Aboriginal Leader Professor Lowitja O'Donoghue remarked, celebrations of special days are important. They symbolise for us the things that unite us as human beings. They are markers that help to define who we are and what we hold dear. They are part of the glue that binds a society together."

Mr Andersen says that in Solomon Islands, it is also important to pause and celebrate the quiet achievement of ordinary Australians, those who work in close partnership with "our Solomon Islands friends and colleagues, and our regional partners, to make a real difference."

"Today is about recognizing the contribution of volunteers who have rolled up their sleeves in the provinces; the Australian Government officials; the many Australian businesses who invest here; RAMSI personnel; and the world-class specialists who donate their life-saving skills in the National Referral Hospital," said Mr Andersen.

"On Australia Day, I would also like to thank our hosts - the Government and people of Solomon Islands. I thank you for taking Australians into your hearts and your homes."

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By GEOFFREY MAURIASI USP, Lacuala Campus, Fiji
By CHARLES KOULI Gizo, Western Province
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