Waleed Aly on The Project.
Waleed Aly on The Project.

Waleed Aly's very Aussie Australia Day solution

It's the debate that rolls around every year - whether it's appropriate to celebrate Australia Day on January 26 - but The Project host Waleed Aly has suggested he has finally solved the issue.

Last night The Project panel discussed the divisive holiday with Aly throwing out December 19 as an option.

"If we moved Australia Day to December 19, that makes that 18 days off. And if it happened to fall on a Monday or a Friday then that could become 20 (days off)," Aly said.

"I believe, irrespective of political difference, I have just solved the Australia Day debate," Aly added with a laugh.

If Australia Day was moved to December 19 that would mean Aussies would only have to take eight days annual leave to get almost a month off work.

Stretching from December 19 to January 6, Aussies could spend almost three weeks out of the office if the public holiday was moved to then.

Waleed Aly has figured out how to fix the Australia Day debate.
Waleed Aly has figured out how to fix the Australia Day debate.

The Project hosts have previously discussed changing the date of Australia Day with Aly throwing out March 2 as an option last year.

March 2 is the day the Australia Act was signed by then Prime Minister Bob Hawke and Queen Elizabeth.

"It was the date that the Australia Acts were passed," Aly said.

"The Australia Acts were passed in Australia but also in Britain, and up until that point the British government could've more or less eliminated Australia. They could've just passed a law and said Australia no longer exists … and that was in the '80s that we passed that law.

"So it was only then that we became a proper fully independent or sovereign nation, and the weather's good in March so let's get to it!"

Co-host Lisa Wilkinson suggested something around Christmas.

"It could be as simple as they quite like the idea that it sits at the end of Christmas holidays and it kind of signifies the last barbecue, I wonder if that is part of it," she said.

Kids at an Australia Day parade in Melbourne. Picture: David Crosling
Kids at an Australia Day parade in Melbourne. Picture: David Crosling

A recent poll, conducted by right wing think tank Institute of Public Affairs, asked 1659 people a series of questions around the divisive public holiday.

The Advance Australia poll found 71 per cent believe the public holiday should stay where it is and 78 per cent saying they were proud to celebrate on January 26.

Advance Australia national director Gerard Benedet said the results from the institute's poll "proved mainstream Aussies are overwhelmingly united in wanting to celebrate our country together".

"Unfortunately, Australians have stated - loudly - that they believe politicians are more concerned with political point scoring rather than real matters of importance, with 84 per cent in agreement," Mr Benedet said.

"Most Australians believe that moves to change Australia Day are solely for political point scoring purposes, and not for the benefit of our nation - it's political correctness on steroids."

Despite the poll, there is still significant opposition to keeping Australia Day on January 26.

Invasion Day rallies are already being planned around Australia's capital cities which a number of Greens senators have confirmed they will attend.

Byron Bay Council in the north of NSW, Fremantle Council in Perth and Moreland Council in Victoria stopped holding Australia Day celebrations on January 26 but do still hold citizenship ceremonies.

Protesters are seen at an Invasion Day Rally last year. Picture: Danny Casey
Protesters are seen at an Invasion Day Rally last year. Picture: Danny Casey