Wednesday, August 19, 2015
THOUSANDS of Tutong residents yesterday turned up in full force to convey birthday greetings to His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah, the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam.
Tutong is the first leg of the monarch’s annual meet-and-greet with residents in all four districts this year.
Accompanying His Majesty were His Royal Highness Prince Hj Al-Muhtadee Billah, the Crown Prince and Senior Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office, HRH Prince Hj Sufri Bolkiah, HRH Prince Hj Jefri Bolkiah, HRH Prince ‘Abdul Malik and HRH Prince ‘Abdul Mateen.
A total of 569 participants put on a show of cultural diversity, which involved students and civil servants.
Students and youth were seen dressed in an array of colours of traditional costumes, carrying colourful umbrellas to add more spice to the performances.
The choir donned a mix of blue and pink attire which added to the sea of colours during the performance.
One of the choir’s main singers, Mohd Isam Aswandy, said the choir practised for over a month to perfect their singing.
This year the choir team performed four songs: Hassanal Bolkiah, Iltizam Generasiku, Patriotisma Tekad Keteguhan Bangsa and Belia Berbudi.
“We will be performing these songs with so much heart and passion to show our love for His Majesty as well as to inject the spirit of patriotism to other performers as well as members of the public who are here today.”
Norshamsuddin Hj Md Yassin, coordinator of the gulingtangan team from non-government organisation Badan Kesenian Kebudayaan (Art and Cultural body) of Tutong district said the get-together is a chance for them to showcase traditional music.
“Gulingtangan is an opportunity for us to showcase not only the nation’s music, but also heritage.
“It is hoped that our performance today will portray our love for His Majesty as well as show our spirit of patriotism! Happy Birthday Your Majesty! Daulat Kebawah Duli Tuan Patik!”
Head of the Ethnic Group Committee Lizawati Abdullah, 50, said the meet-and-greet was a great opportunity for different ethnicities to gather.
“I believe the get-together is a good way to unite different ethnic groups together. Once everyone is together, it feels like a family.”
Lizawati added that the gathering reflect His Majesty as an excellent ruler.
“We are all coming down here to perform and hopefully wish His Majesty happy birthday. With the number of people I see here today, it shows how much the residents and citizens of the country love our ruler.”
This year’s performances reflect the theme Raja Berwawasan Negara Cemerlang (Visionary Leader, Exceptional Nation), said Tutong District Officer Wardi Hj Mohd Ali.
In a speech, the district officer said the Tutong district will remain committed to improve economic activities as a step towards providing “a sustainable social safety net”.
Speaking on the sidelines of the event, Minister of Home Affairs Yang Berhormat Pehin Udana Khatib Dato Paduka Seri Ustaz Hj Awg Badaruddin Pengarah Dato Paduka Hj Awg Othman said the celebration in Tutong was special.
“This is because all those who came today, from young to old, are from the Tutong district itself.”
“They may not formally introduce themselves (to His Majesty), but we know that they are residents of this district, and they are happy to be here with His Majesty,” he added.
The minister said he hoped the upcoming celebrations in other districts will be as festive as Tutong’s.
“The performances were better than I expected. The performers did well and they did it with spirit and passion,” he added.
Courtesy of The Brunei Times