Monday, March 12, 2012

Liberia Stamp 2000

image copyright:
In my stamp collecting hobby, I have also branched out in collecting other countries' stamps which depict scenes of Brunei.

I was very surprised when I found this stamp.  And I was equally surprised when one other bidder tried to beat me to the stamp. Eventually I won, but the price was very much higher than I first thought. I have seen the Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque has been depcited on a number of other countries' stamps. But our beloved Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah as far as I know has only appeared in one country's stamp - South Korea. To see His Majesty appear on another country's stamp was a complete surprise.

I don't know much about the stamp. As far as I can tell, Liberia issued a number of stamps during the millennium and one of them is a series of Chiefs of States of the World which included His Majesty as the Prime Minister of Brunei Darussalam. I know of one other Prime Minister which was the Japanese Prime Minister which also appeared on Liberia's stamps.

This is the only one stamp that I know. I can't find any other information so far on the internet and I will post more information once I found them in the future.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

No one has the right to beat you up

I was one of a few men who attended Brunei's celebration of the International Women's Day at the UBD Chancellor's Hall last Thursday, 8th March 2012. It was focused on violence against women. One of the forum speakers translated a poem by Paulette Kelly titled "I got flowers today" which really moved me. I decided to search for the poem on the internet and apparently this is a very popular poem and featured in many websites. I thought I will post the poem here.  For those of you in Brunei who needed help, our helpline for you to call is 141 and it is open 24 hours a day:-



I got flowers today.
 It wasn't my birthday or any other special day.
 We had our first argument last night,
 And he said a lot of cruel things that really hurt me.
 I know he is sorry and didn't mean the things he said.
 Because he sent me flowers today.

I got flowers today.
 It wasn't our anniversary or any other special day.
 Last night, he threw me into a wall and started to choke me.
 It seemed like a nightmare.
 I couldn't believe it was real.
 I woke up this morning sore and bruised all over.
 I know he must be sorry.
 Because he sent me flowers today.

I got flowers today,
 And it wasn't Mother's Day or any other special day.
 Last night, he beat me up again.
 And it was much worse than all the other times.
 If I leave him, what will I do?
 How will I take care of my kids?
 What about money?
 I'm afraid of him and scared to leave.
 But I know he must be sorry.
 Because he sent me flowers today.

I got flowers today.
 Today was a very special day.
 It was the day of my funeral.
 Last night, he finally killed me.
 He beat me to death.
 If only I had gathered enough courage and strength to leave him,
I would not have gotten


Dedicated to all the victims of domestic violence. If you are a victim, call 141, our 24 hour counsellors at the Department of Community Development (JAPEM) will help you. JAPEM has the laws to help and protect you and the protection of a secure community home for you to stay in. No one has the right to beat you up.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

HBT 2012 Brunei 2 Indonesia 0

What is there to say?

Except... Ole... Ole... Ole... Ole... Brunei 2 Indonesia 0. Our young Tebuans have beaten the young Garudas! Since the tournament was organised by Brunei since 2002, this is the first time that Brunei have won the cup. It is also the first time that Brunei has been able to past the group stage. It is also the first time that Brunei has been able to go to the semi-final. It is also the first time to go to the finals.

Congratulations to the young Tebuans!

Let me also congratulate my Minister, Pehin Dato Haji Hazair for making sure that this tournament is restarted after the last one in 2007 and all the tough calls that he had to make behind the scenes. His leadership and attention to details. Round of applause please. Let me also congratulate my colleague, Dato Haji Hamid Jaafar who worked tirelessly not just to organise the tournament but also to help coach and mentor the team. Without him, the tournament would not have taken place and the team would not have been able to win. I have always enjoyed whenever he played football representing Brunei in the 1980s. It certainly takes a footballer who knows how to play that we could have a great and winning team.

Congratulations too to the joint chairpersons of the working committee - Hajah Norlah, Director of Youth Development Division, Haji Malik, Director of Youth and Sports Department and to Dato Haji Abdul Rahman Mohiddin, President, National Football Association Brunei Darussalam who made sure that all the arrangements are made. Congratulations to all the members of the committee who worked tirelessly behind the stage  to ensure that the tournament is run well.

There are many lessons learned from the tournament. Tickets, security etc. Hopefully this will not be repeated in the future. In the meantime, Congratulations to everyone for supporting Brunei Darussalam! BRUNEI YAKIN!

Thursday, March 08, 2012

Brunei versus Indonesia

The Hasanal Bolkiah Trophy for Southeast Asian Youth Tournament finally had a new name to reach the Finals to be played tomorrow. Nobody can deny that the Brunei team outplayed the Myanmar team who everyone thought has been almost impossible to beat. Brunei Yakin!

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

100 Year Old Brunei Postcard

I won this postcard on the ebay recently. This is probably one of my earliest dated postcard about Brunei that I currently have in my collection. And unlike the others which are photographs with stamps, this particular postcard is a confirmed postcard.

What's amazing about it, it is about 100 years old. The card is postmarked year 1915 but if you look at the content of the postcard, the writer used the year of 1913. It is most likely that the postcard was written around 1913 and posted in 1915. There is also a possibility that the card itself is older than 1913.

This postcard would be making its appearance on the cover of my fourth book which hopefully will be out by the middle of this year.

There are two intriguing things about this postcard. One is the Brunei family or group of people - who are they? Which kampong was this taken? Secondly, when you read the content, the writer noted that this is one of 4 postcards that he was sending - what and where are the other three? Are they also postcards showing Brunei scenes a hundred years ago? The mind boggles.

In the meantime enjoy this 100 year old Brunei postcard.

Oleee! Ole Ole Ole!

Not going to say anything but


Congratulations to our Tebuan Muda team for beating Timor Leste last night and being able to reach the semi finals of the tournament for the first time since the tournament began 10 years ago in 2002. We are proud of you!!!

Record so far:

Group Stage

Brunei 3 Cambodia 2
Brunei 1 Vietnam 2
Brunei 3 Malaysia 0
Brunei 1 Timor Leste 0

Friday, March 02, 2012

Legislative Council Session 2012 Day 1

His Majesty stated the following titah during the Opening Session of the Legislative Council yesterday on 1st March 2012:


Alhamdulillah, Beta bersyukur kehadrat Allah Subhanahu Wata’ala yang telah mengizinkan Majlis Pembukaan Persidangan Mesyuarat Pertama dari Musim Permesyuaratan Kelapan Majlis Mesyuarat Negara berlangsung pada hari ini.

Beta terlebih dahulu ingin mengucapkan tahniah kepada semua Ahli di atas perlantikan semula dan perlantikan baru Majlis Mesyuarat Negara.

Beta juga ingin merakamkan penghargaan dan ucapkan terima kasih kepada bekas Ahli-Ahli Majlis Mesyuarat Negara di atas sumbangan mereka di dalam persidangan-persidangan majlis yang lalu.

Harapan kita terhadap Majlis Mesyuarat Negara adalah sangat tinggi. Persidangan majlis ini adalah merupakan wadah strategik yang berperanan untuk memikir, membahas serta membuat sokongan-sokongan yang terbaik bagi faedah pembangunan negara supaya kekal menjadi “Baldatun Tayyibatun Warabbun Ghafur.”

Sebab itu Beta sangatlah berharap supaya semua Ahli Majlis Mesyuarat Negara akan dapat menunaikan tanggungjawab mereka dengan penuh jujur, ikhlas lagi amanah. Dalam makna apajua usul yang dibawa di dalam Persidangan ini perlulah berasaskan pemikiran dan penelitian yang rapi dengan didukung oleh fakta-fakta betul dan tepat. Di samping itu perbincangan juga biarlah fokus kepada isu-isu yang relevan bagi pembangunan negara.

Pada tahun lepas, di sebalik keadaan ekonomi global yang tidak menentu, Alhamdullilah, negara masih sahaja mampu untuk mencatatkan kadar pertumbuhan yang menggalakkan. Ini adalah berkat kerjasama dan usaha yang padu di kalangan agensi-agensi yang melaksanakan projek dan program kerajaan sebagaimana yang dirancang.

Pada tahun ini, sebagai langkah menaik taraf kesejahteraan rakyat dan penduduk, tumpuan patutlah diberikan kepada lebih meningkatkan lagi tahap dan kualiti pendidikan serta pembinaan keupayaan insan termasuk perkembangan belia-belia dengan pelbagai program yang dirancang serta sistem pendidikan yang terus diperkukuh, insya-Allah hasrat negara untuk melahirkan belia-belia yang berilmu, beriman dan berwawasan akan lebih mudah dicapai.

Namun begitu, kita juga tidak wajar terlepas pandang dengan melupakan peranan institusi keluarga melalui keluarga yang bahagia lagi sempurna. Tidak diragukan lagi adalah mampu untuk mengatasi pelbagai bagai isu sosial dengan lebih berkesan.

Oleh itu, agensi-agensi kerajaan terutamanya yang bertanggung- jawab menangani isu-isu sosial dan kesejahteraan perlulah menumpukan usaha mereka bagi merangka dasar-dasar dan perancangan pengukuhan institusi keluarga itu dan dalam hubungan ini peranan institusi mukim dan kampung yang diterajui oleh Penghulu dan Ketua Kampung juga adalah berkaitan.

Beta amat tidak selesa, kadang-kadang terdengar ada Penghulu atau Ketua Kampung yang mengabaikan anak buah. Mereka itu aktif dan suka kepada kerja-kerja lain tetapi kurang aktif atau tidak suka untuk mengambil tahu dan mendengarkan kesulitan-kesulitan anak buah.

Ini jika benar berlaku ianya adalah amat dikesali. Di samping itu, usaha-usaha juga perlu ditingkatkan untuk menjadikan warga kerja negara ini lebih maju dan produktif. Setiap warga dan penduduk perlulah merebut peluang-peluang yang ada disediakan oleh kerajaan. Mereka perlu memperkaya diri terutama di bidang-bidang pengetahuan dan kemahiran. Melalui pelbagai bentuk kemudahan, program dan bantuan yang ditawarkan, Beta tidak nampak mereka itu perlu tercicir dari arus pembangunan negara.

Menyebut lagi keadaan ekonomi semasa, sejak beberapa tahun kebelakangan pelbagai cabaran muncul di sana sini yang mengancam kestabilan ekonomi global. Malah sampai sekarang pakar-pakar masih sukar untuk mencapai kesepakatan bilakah kemelut ekonomi ini akan berakhir. Hikmah dari kemelut ini, kita mendapat iktibar yang berguna iaitu salah satu punca utama krisis ekonomi ialah hutang.

Orang biasanya menganggap sama ada di peringkat individu, korporat atau negara untuk menutupi sebarang keperluan kewangan adalah dengan jalan berhutang. Tetapi orang kurang ingat bahawa hutang adalah bebanan sama ada disedari atau tidak apabila pinjaman mencapai tahap yang tinggi atau di luar kemampuan untuk mengawalnya, maka pada ketika itu hutang adalah satu petaka besar.

Di sini Alhamdullilah, kerajaan Beta dengan limpah kurnia Allah jua masih sahaja mampu untuk terus membiayai keperluan perbelanjaan tanpa berhutang. Namun ini bukanlah bermakna kita tidak perlu untuk menjalani kehidupan yang penuh berhemah.

Lebih-lebih lagi kita juga menyedari bahawa struktur ekonomi negara perlu terus kukuh dan meluas agar sektor bukan minyak dan gas dapat sama-sama menyumbang kepada pertumbuhan ekonomi negara secara signifikan.

Kita juga tidak lalai dengan menggalakkan perkembangan sektor swasta melalui komitmen agensi-agensi kerajaan dalam memperbaiki iklim perniagaan di negara ini. Kerajaan adalah mengutamakan dasar-dasar dan prosedur mesra pelanggan atau customer-centric.

Akhirnya Beta mengharapkan supaya Ahli-Ahli Majlis Mesyuarat Negara akan dapat bersidang secara objektif dalam merangka isu-isu pembangunan rakyat dan penduduk negara ini.

Sekian, Wabillahit Taufiq Walhidayah Wassalamu’alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh.

Thursday, March 01, 2012

I Love Kuala Belait

I Love Kuala Belait is written and played by Raymond Crooke.

Driving down the road from Jerudong
Don't just stop when you reach Tutong.
With a little bit of luck you might
Make it all the way to Kuala Belait.

...I'm going back to KB, baby.
...That's where I want to be,
...Where the teapot sits on the roundabout
...And the donkey nods at me.

In the middle of the city we've got Jalan Pretty.
That's where all the action is at night.
You can have a lot of fun in Bandar Sri Begawan
But you can't beat Kuala Belait.

...I'm going back to KB, baby.
...That's where I want to be,
...Where the teapot sits on the roundabout
...And the donkey nods at me.
...Bandar Seri Begawan
...Is not the place for everyone.
...'Cause I love - that's right -
...I love Kuala Belait.

This city is expanding at a furious pace.
New buildings going up all over the place
The High Court will open - one of these days.
(Spoken: Well ... it might.)

I love Kuala Belait.
We've got plenty of rice and the noodles are nice.
This town is a gourmet's delight.
You can't go wrong with roti kosong
At New Akbar in Kuala Belait.

In KB town you can watch the sun go down
Sitting on the sand at night.
See the oil rigs burning bright, while the sand flies bite.
On the beach at Kuala Belait.
Let me make this clear -- I really like Seria
The billionth barrel is a wonderful site,
But nothing can compare with the excitement in the air
In downtown Kuala Belait.

Inspirational Quotes