By Gabriella Payne
A distinguished brigadier from the High Commission of Pakistan made a special visit to Officer recently, as he met with Member for Gembrook, Brad Battin MP and local businessman and community leader Adam Khan (Sadiqzai) for a chat over afternoon tea.
Brigadier Shoaib Bin Akram, Tamgha-e-Basalat was only visiting Melbourne on a short trip from his base in Canberra, but decided to make the journey to Officer on Thursday 1 April to meet with Mr Battin to form a new friendship and to talk about ways of further engaging the Pakistani community in the area.
Mr Battin said that he was thrilled to welcome Brigadier Shoaib Bin Akram to his office and help strengthen the relationship with the Pakistani community in the local area.
“We do have a lot of different communities here from all over the world, and to engage with them individually is just great,” Mr Battin said.
“As we grow and we see so many people from various communities make this area their home, I think it’s really great for our relationship that we do engage with [different communities’] senior leaders, which also helps us with our ongoing relationship.”
Mr Battin said that he and his team were “more than pleased” that the brigadier managed to find time to visit Officer and it was great to sit down and have a chat with him and Mr Kahn, the owner of Pakenham’s Vista cafe and passionate community leader.
Mr Battin said that he had many “exciting” plans in the works to engage with Officer’s vast multicultural community and was looking forward to growing his relationship with the Pakistani community as well.