Queensland premier hosts record-breaking lunch

Ms Palaszczuk hosted lunch for 45 senior citizens aged 100 and above at the state Parliament. The largest gathering of centenarians in the Guinness World Record was set in a nursing home at New Jersey, in 2013, with 31 such seniors.
Ms Palaszczuk hosted lunch for 45 senior citizens aged 100 and above at the state Parliament. The largest gathering of centenarians in the Guinness World Record was set in a nursing home at New Jersey, in 2013, with 31 such seniors.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

Event for 45 seniors sets unofficial record of most centenarians gathered in a room

BRISBANE • Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk held a luncheon yesterday and found herself on the way to entering the record books, Australian media reported.

She hosted lunch for 45 senior citizens aged 100 and above at the state Parliament, a gathering that set an unofficial record for the most number of centenarians in one room, Australian Associated Press (AAP) reported yesterday.

Only six of the guests failed to produce their birth certificates, but that would not stop them from breaking a Guinness World Record, according to the AAP.

The previous mark was set in a nursing home at New Jersey, in the United States in 2013 during a gathering of 31 centenarians.

"She's the first premier I met. It was a privilege. She was very nice," Ms Madge Nichols, the youngest at 100, told the AAP, adding that she enjoyed being a guest of the premier.

While a recent poll rated Ms Palaszczuk, 47, as the most popular premier in the country, she is under mounting pressure due to the the behaviour of her ministers, the Australian Financial Review reported yesterday. Her Cabinet was in disarray on Thursday after agriculture minister Leanne Donaldson resigned over a string of personal financial blunders.

But Ms Palaszczuk told her centenarian guests yesterday that they may have seen a few premiers come and go but she would be around "for a few more years to come".

Life expectancy has hit a new high in Australia, where a newborn girl is expected to live to 84.5 and a boy to 80.4, the Sydney Morning Post reported recently.

"In 2013-2015, the male and female combined life expectancy at birth estimate for Australia was 82.4 years. This was 11.9 years higher than the world average of 70.5 years in 2010-2015," said Ms Beidar Cho, a director at the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 05, 2016, with the headline 'Queensland premier hosts record-breaking lunch'. Print Edition | Subscribe