HER Majesty the Queen of England led a host of congratulatory messages from foreign dignitaries on the occasion of His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam’s 68th birthday.
“It gives me great pleasure to extend to Your Majesty my congratulations, and also my best wishes for the people in Brunei during this historic year, which marks 30 years of independence for your country,” the Queen said in a press statement.
British High Commissioner to Brunei David Campbell acknowledged “ the many close links that so happily exist between the United Kingdom and Brunei”.
“It is my special honour to extend to His Majesty very special birthday greetings.
“This is a particularly special year for His Majesty and for the citizens of Brunei, given that 2014 marks 30 years of independence for Brunei.
“We join Brunei in celebrating this momentous milestone,” Campbell added in a press release.
Singapore President Tony Tan Keng Yam took the opportunity to “reaffirm the strong and longstanding friendship between our two countries”.
“On behalf of the people of Singapore, I offer my warmest congratulations on Your Majesty’s 68th birthday,” Tan said, adding that he was “pleased that Your Majesty was able to make a state visit to Singapore in April”.
He also lauded His Majesty for playing a central role in “deepening a special relationship” between both nations.
“I’m confident that the close partnership between our countries will continue to grow in the years ahead,” he added, while extending best wishes for a blessed Ramadhan.
Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong paid tribute to the Sultan by singing praises of His Majesty’s vision and wise leadership, which have “made Brunei a success story”. Due to the ruler’s guidance, “Bruneians live in prosperity and stability and enjoy an excellent quality of life”, Lee said in a press statement.
“Brunei has become a respected member of the international community and a key member of Asean,” he added.
Lee also fondly recalled a poignant moment with His Majesty during the latter’s visit to Singapore in April.
“It was a pleasure to catch up with Your Majesty during the state visit. We had a candid and fruitful exchange of views, and our breakfast at the Gardens by the Bay was particularly memorable,” he said.
Lee added that he was looking forward to “strengthening this friendship for many years to come”.
“Brunei and Singapore are special friends. With Your Majesty’s support, the friendship between our leaders and people continues to grow,” he said, wishing His Majesty and Her Majesty the Duli Raja Isteri “continued good health, success and a blessed Ramadhan”.
Founding father of modern Singapore Lee Kuan Yew congratulated His Majesty on his birthday and shared his delight at being able to “catch up with old friends” during the Sultan’s April state visit.
Kuan Yew, who said the relationship between both countries has grown from strength to strength, was “confident that these ties will continue to flourish with Your Majesty’s careful guidance.”
“It is a bond forged through the years, built on mutual trust not only at the leadership level, but through all levels of government,” he said, while wishing His Majesty and Her Majesty happiness and good health.
Singapore Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong, who wished His Majesty his “heartiest congratulations”, commended the ruler for the “enduring friendships with several generations of Singaporean leaders.” Saying that he was pleased to have had the opportunity to meet His Majesty in April, Goh added, “these personal ties and our shared national interests will ensure that our two countries remain steadfast partners”.
- Borneo Bulletin
(15 July 2014)