16th LegCo Meeting opens on Monday

Hakim Hayat

The official opening ceremony for the first meeting of the 16th Legislative Council (LegCo) Meeting will be on March 9, at the LegCo building in Jalan Dewan Majlis, the Department of Councils of State announced yesterday.

The annual parliamentary session that discusses government budget, development plans and national policies is scheduled to be opened by His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam.

The 16th LegCo Meeting will be chaired by Speaker of the LegCo Yang Berhormat Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Lela Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Abdul Rahman bin Dato Setia Haji Mohamed Taib, and he will be assisted by Secretary to the Cabinet Minister’s Council and Clerk to the LegCo Pehin Orang Kaya Pekerma Jaya Dato Paduka Haji Judin bin Haji Asar and Deputy Clerk to the LegCo Rose Aminah binti Haji Ismail.

This is the 16th sitting of the parliamentary session since its reconvening in 2004. It will focus on the deliberation and approval of the fiscal budget bill for the financial year 2020/2021 that will be in effect April 1.

Apart from the fiscal budget, the LegCo meeting, which normally sit for no more than 14 days, will also see members discuss national issues and provide constructive ideas for the country and the people that will be evaluated according to needs and priority.

His Majesty in his titah emphasised that the focus the session should be discussion on the implementation of economic strategies such as the diversification of our economy; review rules, policies and procedures to ensure transparency; prioritising youth development; as well as the welfare of the people and harmony.

The council comprises 36 members including cabinet ministers, state dignitaries, representatives from various professional, social and religious groups and grassroots leaders from Mukims and villages.

During its sitting, two sessions of the LegCo meeting will be held daily — from 9am to 12pm and 2pm to 4.30pm — and is open to the public after the official opening ceremony.

The Department of Councils of State reminded visitors to dress appropriately in either office attire or traditional Malay dress. Students are permitted to wear school uniforms.

Visitors must bring along their identification card in order to obtain security passes.

Educational institutions are welcome to watch the proceedings and are advised to contact the Secretariat of the Legislative Council at 2380501 if they are interested.