Bidding farewell: David Martin says he will miss ‘gates’ and Express TV
KARACHI: After spending three years, British Council Pakistan’s director, David Martin, bid farewell with a strong message of faith for his host country.
“I see Pakistanis losing faith and I know it’s saddening,” he said while talking to The Express Tribune. “But of what I have seen of this country during my time here, Pakistan will go a long way.”
A farewell party was organised to pay tribute to Martin’s services by British Council, at Avari Hotel on Monday. Dressed in a white kurta shalwar, Martin said, “I had a wonderful team of people who gave me an idea of the potential that can be found in Pakistan despite lack of education and resources.”
While sharing his memories about Pakistan, he said that he will never be able to forget the weather and the pace of news. “When you see a newspaper after a gap of two days, you’d definitely ask yourself what was all this about,” he said. “There is always going to be some exciting story… the Memogate or some-other gate. I think I will miss Pakistan when I can’t find Express TV back home.”
“Finally, David is leaving Pakistan after serving for more than 3 years,” said Mashhood Rizvi, the provincial director of British Council Pakistan, in his welcome address. “After joining us at a critical juncture, when a number of policies were about to change, David led the mandate of British Council superbly by enriching and expanding its portfolio in all areas.”
Rizvi also commented on Martin’s particular affinity for development work, especially in Karachi, where he had supported programmes for developing English, education, and arts. As for the change in the British Council’s policies, Zakia Sarwar, the honorary executive director at the Society of Pakistan English Language Teachers (SPELT), shared her experience of working with Martin and his team at the council.
She said that Martin, sensing a global change, had also modified its strategy from being an organisation known as an initiator of projects to be a more inclusive of the local stakeholders.
She told The Express Tribune that although the framework for change had been designed before Martin but he had executed the theoretical endeavors into a practical reality. “This was possible because of his exposure and understanding of developing countries before his posting in Pakistan,” Sarwar said.