Pakistani tourist enjoying Samoa

By Soli Wilson 25 January 2019, 12:00AM

Pakistani tourist Mujawir Hussain is a long way from home and is glad to have chosen Samoa over Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates.

He said he works for a non-government organisation which rewards its staff with return tickets to destinations around the world, and instead of going to Abu Dhabi – which most of his colleagues have visited due to its close proximity to Pakistan – he chose Samoa.

Since his arrival in Samoa, he has enjoyed the country’s weather, people and culture, not forgetting the blue ocean.

“I’m the first person to choose this country from our NGO and to visit the Pacific,” he said.

Mujawir will be in Samoa for 90 days and indicated that he did not experience any visa issues upon his arrival. And he has been having a ball since his arrival.

“In Pakistani there’s a winter season nowadays and it gets very chilly weather to minus 16 degrees Celsius and so when I came here I really enjoy the weather – it’s not too hot not too cold. I really like it,” he said.

The Samoan culture, food and its people continue to fascinate Mujawir and he said he is enjoying the experience. 

“From what I have seen, I know that a lot of Samoans like seafood. I visited the cultural village and also different villages, I noticed that it’s good for me, that I take a lot on the culture and religion and the environment,” he added. 

While being a Muslim has its challenges around the world, Mujawir – who is a devout practitioner – said Samoans are friendly people. 

“They don’t hate anybody, or discriminate if someone is from a different religion – they do not hate any religion. The thing that I have seen in all the countries is that different people hate different religions.

“When I sit with any person from Samoa and share my feelings with them, also share my religion with them, they did not hate me, they also welcome me here,” he said. 

The absence of Pakistanis on the streets of Apia was also noticeable, he said, but noted Indian and Chinese restaurants. 

“There is no Pakistani here and I’ve visited here and there and different hotels but I have not seen any Pakistani here. A lot of Indian restaurants and Indians who work here and Chinese also running businesses but no Pakistanis so far,” he said.

Referring to his own features, Mujawir said a lot of people at his Apia hotel assume he is a “palagi”. 

“Lots of people see me and didn’t believe when I told them I am from Pakistan. They said to me ‘you are not Pakistani; you are looking like a palagi’ so it was very interesting” he added.

By Soli Wilson 25 January 2019, 12:00AM

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