Golden opportunity to thank His Majesty
Rokiah Mahmud

DESPITE the heavy downpour that showered Bandar Seri Begawan, the residents of the Brunei-Muara District braved the rain for the opportunity to meet and greet His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam on the occasion of his 67th birthday celebration yesterday at the grand finale of the get-together ceremony at Taman Haji Sir Muda Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien.

It is rarely seen in any country where the monarch himself was soaked in the rain to personally receive greetings from his beloved subjects.

In an interview with the Minister of Home Affairs, Pehin Udana Khatib Dato Paduka Seri Setia Ustaz Haji Awang Badaruddin, he said the get-together ceremony which was held in the four districts is a platform for the people to convey their greetings to His Majesty for the royal birthday celebration.

“Aside from that, the ceremony also served as a medium for the people to thank the government of His Majesty for all the facilities that have been provided in order to improve the standard of living of his subjects.

“Every year, the executive committee for the celebration will choose significant theme for this get-together ceremony encompass the relation between the beloved monarch and the people. Among others, the theme also aimed to uphold the sovereignty and the leadership of His Majesty, empowering patriotic spirit and strengthening an undivided loyalty.

“As we observe today, despite the heavy downpour, His Majesty still receives ‘junjung ziarah’ from the people who are here today. Truly, we can see how strong the bond exists between the monarch and the people.

“In fact, His Majesty is very concerned for those who are taking part in the performance as well as the committee itself in ensuring the smooth running of the event,” said the Minister of Home Affairs.

Meanwhile, in a separate interview with the Minister of Health, Pehin Orang Kaya Johan Pahlawan Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Adanan, he elaborated that the get-together ceremony is a symbol of love show by the monarch to his people and vice-versa. This tradition should be continued as part of strengthening the love and loyalty of the people for the ruler.

At the get-together ceremony, the bulletin also approached a member of the Legislative Council, YB Haji Jumat bin Akim. He said the ceremony is part of the medium for the people to greet and meet His Majesty for his birthday. He added, the ceremony is one of the much-anticipated events by the residents of Brunei-Muara District.

“From this event, we can see people from all walks of life be the businessmen, volunteers, youth, associations, organisations, students and so on, all come together at one place with one wish to meet His Majesty and extend their birthday greetings.”

As for the former member of Legislative Council, Haji Bakar bin Mansor, Penghulu of Mukim Lumapas, pointed out that yesterday’s ceremony proved how much the monarch is loved by his people. Aside from that, this is the chance for the people to convey their thanks to His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam for the peace, harmony, stability and leadership. - Borneo Bulletin (30 September 2013)