Prince Malik joins 10,000 youths for assembly
By Aziz Idris

A National Youth Tadarus al-Quran Assembly involving nearly 10,000 youths nationwide was held simultaneously in Brunei's four districts yesterday.

In Brunei-Muara, the assembly took place at two venues where some 4,000 boys congregated at the Jame' 'Asr Hassanil Bolkiah, while some 3,000 girls gathered at the Omar 'Ali Saifuddien Mosque.

Belait saw participation from over 750 youths at the Mohammad Jamalul Alam Mosque. In Tutong, a similar ceremony that was held at Mukim Kiudang Mosque saw 650 youths participate, while roughly 500 more youths assembled at the Mohammad Salleh Main Mosque in Pekan Bangar in Temburong.

Present to participate in the youth assembly at the Jame' 'Asr Hassanil Bolkiah Mosque was His Royal Highness Prince 'Abdul Malik.

HRH Prince 'Abdul Malik was greeted upon his arrival by the Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports, Pehin Orang Kaya Pekerma Laila Diraja Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Hazair bin Haji Abdullah; the Minister of Education, Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Kerna Dato Seri Setia (Dr) Haji Awang Abu Bakar bin Haji Apong; the Minister of Religious Affairs, Pg Dato Seri Setia Dr Haji Mohammad bin Pg Haji Abdul Rahman; and the Minister of Home Affairs, Pehin Udana Khatib Dato Paduka Seri Setia Ustaz Haji Awang Badaruddin bin Pengarah Dato Paduka Awang Haji Othman.

Also present was the permanent secretary from the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports (MCYS), Dato Paduka Awang Haji Mohd Hamid bin Haji Mohd Jaafar, as well as members of the organising committee.

The national youth tadarus al-Quran assembly was organised by the MCYS in cooperation with the Ministry of Education (MoE), Ministry of Home Affairs (MoHA), Ministry of Religious Affairs (MoRA) and was coordinated by the Youth and Sports Department of MCYS.

The assembly, which took place for its second time, involved youths representing higher learning institutions, colleges, secondary schools, youth and sports associations, uniformed associations and individuals.

Among the objectives of the large nationwide gathering was the enlivenment of the holy month of Ramadhan, encouragement of active participation from the Sultanate's youth in various religious activities - with particular emphasis on the reading of Islam's sacred book, al-Quran. In addition, the congregation aimed to provide the youth with beneficial and meaningful activities to fill up their time. The ceremony was also designed to highlight the determination of His Majesty's vision to make Brunei a 'Zikir Nation'.

The religious ceremony commenced with the recital of surah al-fatihah, followed by a khatam al-Quran session led by Mosque Affairs Officer, Haji Asminan Haji Chuchu.

The programme included a religious and motivational talk entitled 'The spirit of al-Quran in Youths' presented by Mosque Affairs Officer, Ustaz Awang Haji Jufri bin Haji Hidup of the Universiti Brunei Darussalam Mosque.

After khatam al-Quran came to an end, HRH Prince Abdul' Malik consented to join the mass Zohor prayer prior to the ceremony's conclusion. - Borneo Bulletin (14th August 2011)