Recite Quran and reap its many benefits
By Syafiq Affendy

His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam urged all Muslims, especially the youths, in the country to at least be able to read the Quran so as to reap its many benefits.

His Majesty last night delivered a titah and presented prizes to the winners of the National Level Finals of the Adult Quran Reading Competition for the year 1430 Hijrah, held at the International Convention Centre (ICC) in Berakas.

"Quran experts are diligent in reading the Holy Book because they know that reciting it will bring forth blessings and rewards. Quran helps calm worried hearts and restless souls. Every spiritual disturbance, with Allah's will, can be cured with Quran," said His Majesty.

"Those who can read the Quran will be able to subconsciously appreciate it. This is the secret contained in the Quran. The Quran is beneficial to those that appreciate it."

His Majesty also hoped that the Quran reading competition would help revive and uplift the spirit of learning to read the Quran excellently and beautifully, as reading the Quran the way it has to be read will stimulate further development in its recitation.

"The way to read is to learn. It is compulsory to learn (the art of) reading the Quran, especially for children. We have to make sure that they do not choose a path that excludes learning the Quran," stressed His Majesty.

"There should not be any children who are not Quran literate, because religious schools have existed in the country for more than 50 years. If there are still those among the 50-year group who are illiterate until today, we have the right to ask why? Doesn't this show that they have dropped out from receiving education at religious schools? And why did they drop out?" asked His Majesty.

"We may have to look at the religious education system itself. If there are faults in the system we must try to find a solution," said His Majesty.

Following His Majesty's titah was the announcement of the results of the competition along with comments by Pehin Orang Kaya Paduka Seri Utama Dato Seri Setia Hj Awg Salim bin Awg Hj Besar, Chairman of the judging panel, who is also the Syariah High Court Judge.

Recitations of the Quran by both champions ensued, as well as from an invited Qari from Indonesia Hj Mu'min Mubarok, who won the 50th International Tilawah Al-Quran in Malaysia last year.

His Majesty later consented to present the prizes to the winners - Awang Haji Muhammad Fahmie bin Haji Awang Metussin and Dayang Hajah Nurul Akmalina bte Hj Yahya who emerged champions in the Qari and Qariah category with 90.8 per cent and 89.95 per cent respectively, beating six others to bring home a Challenge Trophy, $5000 cash, a Haj package worth $8,500 sponsored by Darussalam Holdings Sdn Bhd, trophies, books and certificates of participation.

In second place were Ak Mohd Adibul Amin bin Pg Hj Marjuki and Dyg Nurfaezah bte Hj Emran, both defending champions. They took home $3,000 cash, Umrah return tickets sponsored by Umairah Travel Centre Sdn Bhd, trophy, books and certificates of participation.

Third place went to Awg Hj Ismail bin Hj Sulaiman and Dyg Norezah bte Hj Md Deli, who received $2,000 cash, return tickets to Kuala Lumpur sponsored by the Royal Brunei Airlines, trophies, books and certificates of participation.

Appreciation prizes were also presented to Awg Mohammad Zul Hafiz bin Awg Tengah and Dyg Amal Nazirah bte Hj Asmat. They won $1000 cash, trophies, books and certificates of participation. - Borneo Bulletin (29th May 2009)