Ramadhan provides the chance to quit smoking
Hamidah Ismail

His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam has consented for the distribution of a total of 148 tonnes of 'Safawi' dates to the Muslim population of the country in conjunction with the upcoming Ramadhan.

His Royal Highness Prince 'Abdul Malik yesterday handed over His Majesty's personal gifts to the Penghulu Mukims and village heads across the country as well as respective Commanders of the Royal Brunei Armed Forces and the Directors of Formation and Commanding Officers of the Royal Brunei Police Force.

"In a few days, Muslims worldwide will be celebrating the month of Ramadhan and hence, many have vowed to improve their well-being and eliminate previous flaws," said His Royal Highness in a sabda at the Launching Ceremony for the Distribution of Dates at the Chancellor Hall, Universiti Brunei Darussalam.

At the ceremony, HRH touched on the topic of healthy living and urged Muslims to practise a healthy diet and abandon unhealthy habits such as smoking. "However, upon closer inspection, how many actually really intend to start a healthy lifestyle, particularly those who still live out the habit of smoking?" HRH asked.

The lack of devotion towards healthy living is evident with the increase in health problems among society due to unhealthy and unbalanced lifestyle, said HRH. "Therefore, before we observe the month of Ramadhan, let us prepare ourselves spiritually, physically and mentally. The Muslim community needs to start healthy eating and reduce the intake of unhealthy food and drinks."

The month of Ramadhan among others provides a chance to quit the habit of smoking, HRH said, as HRH urged Muslims to take the opportunity to give up the bad habit. "Insha Allah we will be able to perform our observance with enough energy and reduced risk of health problems. It is hoped that this year, with a strong faith and confidence, we will be able to perform our rite with more ingenuity and become a better Muslim."

HRH in his sabda also conveyed His Majesty's wish that the distribution of dates will be conducted in a proper manner so as to ensure that those who are entitled will receive them accordingly.

"With that, this matter has to be handled responsibly by the relevant people and there should be no complaints of anyone not receiving my father's (His Majesty) personal gift," HRH added, "If this happens, it will only mean that we have failed to deliver the responsibility bestowed upon us." - Borneo Bulletin (4 July 2012)