THE Y-AXIS BLOG

Get the latest and most useful updates on overseas careers, immigration, travel and visas here.

Ashak Nathwani – Refugee earns Australia’s highest honor

Posted on September 29, 2020
Comment (0)
Share :
blank
blank
blank
blank
blank
blank
blank

Ashak Nathwani

Ashak Nathwani, who migrated to Australia from Uganda in 1972 received the honor of becoming a member in the General Division of the Order of Australia (AM), for significant service to the Ismaili community in Australia, to tertiary education in the area of sustainable design, and to engineering in 2017.

Talking about his journey from Uganda to Australia, he says, “When I came back to Kampala in 1972, everyone of Indian origin was forced to leave Uganda under the orders of Idi Amin. I had a Ugandan passport so I thought I could stay but they cancelled my passport and I became state-less! It wasn’t for my engineering degree but because I was a lecturer at the Uganda Technical College that I was allowed to enter Australia.”

Nathwani landed in Australia as a refugee with only 20 cents and worked with a couple of firms before he finally got a job at a leading engineering consultancy firm.

In the last 48 years, Nathwani has had his name inscribed on The Wall that honors migrants and has also earned one of Australia’s highest honor.

He settled in Wahroonga 35 years ago and has been involved in the design and construction of many iconic structures including the Sydney Olympic stadium and Aquatic Centre.

In 2011, he also worked on the building of 1 Bligh Lane, Sydney, a skyscraper that has 6 green stars and several sustainable design awards.

He led the NDY environment discipline because of his continuing enthusiasm for environmental design and retired from NDY in 2011, after 33 years, to pursue an academic career at the University of Sydney. Here, he assumed the position of director and senior lecturer, pursuing a PhD in Comfort and HVAC systems.

In the last 48 years, Nathwani has had his name inscribed on The Wall that honors migrants and has also earned one of Australia’s highest honor.

On September 6, 2017, for his important services to the Ismaili [sub-sect of Shia Islam] group in Australia, Nathwani was named a Member of the Australia Order (AM) in the general division of the Order of Australia. Nathwani, being an Ismaili, established the settlement of the Ismaili community in Australia. He led the development of community centers in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth. He chaired His Highness the Aga Khan’s arrangements for two visits to Sydney in 1979 and 1987.

Talking of the award he said, “I didn’t expect something like this after I arrived in the country with virtually nothing. To have been able to contribute to the country and to get acknowledgment is very humbling,” he said.

Nathwani’s message to other immigrants has been to educate their children as much as they can and do humanitarian work to help the society.

Share :
blank
blank
blank
blank
blank
blank
blank
Y-Axis
Y-Axis

More Posts

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

14 − 2 =

FEEDSPOT ACCREDITATION

blank

Archives

LET'S STAY IN TOUCH
Follow Us

We want to hear from you!