| Azlan Othman |
A MEGA project to build two Arabic schools separately for boys and girls, costing around $95 million, as well as a religious school costing around $4 million has begun.
“It is a historical and big expenditure project for Brunei Darussalam and will become a landmark of religious and Arabic education and a symbol of the nation’s Malay Islamic Monarchy (MIB) philosophy.
“It will be in line to realise the country’s aspiration to become a Zikir Nation,” said the Minister of Religious Affairs, Pg Dato Seri Setia Dr Hj Mohammad bin Pg Hj Abdul Rahman, who was the chief guest at the contract signing ceremony for the two Arabic and religious schools.
The two Arabic schools will each be able to accommodate about 2,000 students and expected to cope with the increasing demand from parents to send their children to Arabic schools.
“We would like to express our gratitude to His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam and the government for such a big allocation to make the project the pride of the nation and our people,” the minister said.
Looking back, the minister said the nation built Hassanal Bolkiah Arabic Boys Secondary School and Raja Isteri Pg Anak Damit Arabic Girls Secondary School where the intake of students was limited.
“With the completion of new and modern buildings, we could send more students to Arabic schools.
“I hope that the schools will be completed according to the specified time and I will be more pleased if they are completed ahead of schedule,” the minister said.
The signing ceremony was between the Government of His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam through the Ministry of Religious Affairs and three contractors involved in the construction of three projects, the two new Arabic Secondary Schools for Girls and Boys located in Kg Katok and Kg Rimba respectively as well as the building of a new religious school in Jln Bedil in Kg Lambak.
Overall, the total cost of the three projects will reach $99,133,296.42. The signing ceremony was witnessed by the Minister of Religious Affairs. The contract for the two Arabic schools was signed by the Deputy Minister of Religious Affairs, Pg Dato Paduka Hj Bahrom bin Pg Hj Bahar, while the contract for the religious school was signed by the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Religious Affairs, Dato Seri Setia Awg Hj Abdul Aziz bin Orang Kaya Maharaja Lela Hj Mohd Yussof.
Pg Alli bin Pg Hj Mohammad, Head of Building and Maintenance of the Ministry of Religious Affairs, said the building takes into account the Malay Islamic Monarchy (MIB) concept in the design and development of the schools approved by the Islamic Religious Council board members.
In less than two years, the buildings will become landmarks in Brunei Darussalam.
The contractor appointed for Kg Rimba Arabic Secondary School, to be built at a cost of $48,145,113.08, is Duners Sdn Bhd while for Kg Katok Arabic Secondary School, to be built at a cost of $46,840,935.84, the contractor is Metrobina & Partners Sdn Bhd. For Jln Bedil Religious School, the contractor is Farina Ninjaya Sdn Bhd and the school will be built at a cost of $4,147,247.50.