News National Peter Dutton to hold citizenship overrule powers

Peter Dutton to hold citizenship overrule powers

Peter Dutton
Peter Dutton will gain extended powers over citizenship decisions. Photo: AAP
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Immigration minister Peter Dutton will have the power to overrule tribunal decisions he disagrees with under new citizenship changes.

The minister can already overturn the Administrative Appeals Tribunal on some visa matters, but the provision will be extended under fresh reforms to be introduced to parliament this week.

“It’s not overruling any court, there’s still the ability to go to the Federal Court,” Mr Dutton told Channel Seven on Monday.

“This is really just trying to align the arrangement in terms of citizenship with the laws that exist in relation to granting and cancelling visas now,” he said.

The legislation will extend permanent residency from one year to four before people can apply for citizenship, as well as toughening English language standards.

It also introduces a values test, and will require people to demonstrate they have integrated into Australian society.

Mr Dutton has briefed Labor on the bill and called on the opposition to support its passage through parliament.

Opposition frontbencher Andrew Leigh says the party will go through its usual processes in deciding whether to back the measures.

But he criticised the government for not presenting any details since the announcement in April.

Dr Leigh said the idea of requiring a tougher English test was unexceptional.

“I don’t mind the idea that the typical new citizen should have to speak English better than (Deputy Prime Minister) Barnaby Joyce,” he told Sky News.