| Izah Azahari |
A TOTAL of 312 youths made up the National Service Programme (PKBN) participants who ecstatically performed within the span of three minutes on the field of Taman Haji Sir Muda Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien yesterday in front of His Majesty the Sultan and Yang di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam, the royal entourage and the public.
The highlight of the performance was the ‘Silent Drill’, which was accompanied by the Royal Brunei Armed Forces and Royal Brunei Police Force Drumline Bands.
Decorated in their full PKBN uniforms, the performance consisted of a march past which was then followed by the exercise movements.
“The movements portray the readiness of the youth in being part of the National Service Programme to serve the country,” explained Mohammad Azri bin Haji Yahya, a volunteer choreography trainer under the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports.
“The final pattern is the form of a tree with four branches, representing the four districts, and an umbrella, portraying their defence, shows how they will be able to protect the country.”
Mohammad Azri said that they had trained the youths within three weeks, beginning at the end of January, with a total of 10 choreography trainers comprising volunteers under the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports, as well as youths who are still schooling or are waiting to get into higher education institutions.
The Bulletin also took the opportunity to interview a number of the PKBN youths.
One of them was Sabrina binti Haji Mahmud, a Bruneian student currently undergoing her study-abroad programme in the International Islamic University of Malaysia (IIUM) in Law, and has been part of PKBN for National Day since 2012.
“It definitely feels great to be able to participate in the National Day event again as part of PKBN, and I’m glad I took the flight back from Malaysia last week just to be a part of it,” exclaimed Sabrina.
“That sense of patriotism when I participate in such an event keeps growing and it’s as much alive as it was a few years back when I first joined.”
Meanwhile, first-time participants of PKBN, Mohammad Iffat Muqri and Aminurrasyid Haji Ramli, both agreed that it was a unique feeling to be part of the PKBN during the National Day celebration.
“It’s a once-in-a-lifetime thing as I’ve never participated in the National Day event before so it’s a new feeling for me, and it’s definitely a great experience,” said Mohammad Iffat.
“Since PKBN trains us as the country’s youth to be the future leaders of the country, it changes us and makes us become more independent, boosts our confidence, and teaches us new ways of life.”
“It feels very exciting to be able to participate in PKBN, especially during the National Day, because I’ve always just watched the event on television, but now I’m here as one of the participants and it makes me feel very happy to be part of it,” explained Aminurrasyid.
He later added that being part of PKBN is quite challenging for first-timers, but in the end the youths will gradually get used to it.
“Joining the PKBN is very special because it means that you’re already contributing to the country because we’re providing leadership to our fellow youths and providing services to the needy,” said Aminurrasyid.
He also plans to apply what he has learned in his PKBN training through helping more people, leading a team and getting fit in order to support the Vision 2035.