Lest We Forget



Compiled by Zaleha Jalil

Sports School receives key to new building

Shahrol Daud

April 9, 2010 – The Sports School has received the key to its most awaited new building (phase 1) in Kampong Pulaie after more than a year in construction.

Kua Tshin Heng, Managing Director of Surati Construction Sdn Bhd, which undertook the building works costing BND18,790,199.77, presented the key to Public Works Department’s Acting Chief Director Pengiran Hajah Marhani binti Abdullah.

He later handed it over to the ceremony’s guest of honour, Datin Paduka Apsah binti Haji Abdul Majid, Pemanent Secretary (Core Education) at the Ministry of Education, who then presented it to the Sports School’s Principal Zaman bin Haji Gapar. A giant green key symbolised the formal handover.

Construction of the huge building on a 10-hectare (24.7–acre) land that consists of seven blocks, an indoor stadium, as well as a running track and sports field, designed by architect Perunding Alamreka Sdn Bhd, began on February 16, 2008 and was fully completed February 4 this year.

The project comes under the 9th National Development Plan (RKN-9). “We’re looking forward to seeing the students enjoy learning in their new environment,” stated the principal.

A view of the school
Permanent Secretary presenting the key to the principal

“The school currently offers six kinds of sports – football, athletics, sepak takraw, pencak silat, badminton and golf. However, there are more sports to be offered, including 10-pin bowling, gymnastics, table tennis, archery and so forth, but pending approval from the Ministry of Education.”

The principal also mentioned that all coaches teaching at the schools are locals who hold certified licences. “We could never have imagined that we would end up with something of this scale. The new building was designed for approximately 500 students,” he said.

“We have seven blocks here, consisting of classrooms, laboratories, offices, the Central Atrium area and an indoor stadium providing 12 badminton and four sepak takraw courts.”

He added that the sports school, which is only open to Bruneian citizens, currently has 103 students, not inclusive of those in Year 7. When asked about the school’s achievements, he explained, “We won silver in athletics through our student Ezrani Anak Sebad at the Philippines Open 2009.

“We also snatched a gold medal in a pencak silat event during the Borneo Sports 2009 and even won another gold at the World Sepak Takraw Championship in Malaysia last year. We are proud to say that we have delivered athletes with potential in sports and achievements, though in small numbers. The school is expected to be in operation by April 22 this year.

Turtle protection becomes official

Jacky Lim

April 9, 2000 – At last the turtles around Brunei waters and those who come to lay their eggs ashore, can be officially declared protected.

For, on Tuesday, April 8, a National Turtle Management and Conservation Programme will be officially launched. The Ministry of Industry and Primary Resources Pehin Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Abdul Rahman, will officially launch this much-awaited programme at his Ministry.

Brunei became a full member of Convention against International Trade of Endangered species (CITIES) in August 1990 and a committee on turtle conservation and management was set up a year ago.

However, regardless if this noble work commitment made by Brunei, the public has been reportedly encouraged the consumption of turtle eggs which have been openly and shamelessly sold as food at local tamus and markets.

The general feeling is that the public may not be fully aware of the meaning of conservation at all. According to one of the Fisheries Departments officers the population of turtles off Brunei waters had reportedly decreased in numbers.

A turtle laying eggs in a Malaysian shore. PHOTO: NST

In fact studies made during the past 30 years have shown a steady decline in their numbers, the officers said.

Meanwhile, with the National campaign about to be launched it is much hoped that the public would begin to be aware of the damage done to this endangered species.

The public is invited to find out all about turtle protection and even join in a turtle nest programme.

This can easily be done by merely walking in Setia Pahlawan Hall to sign up to be a volunteer. Currently an estimated 70 people have signed up.

The Conservation programme will also sport and exhibition where souvenirs of T-shirts, caps and bags are sold, to encouraged the public to care for these great marine creatures who live to be over hundred if left unharmed by humans.

Meanwhile, NST reports that three islands off Sandakan on Sabah’s east coast are among the few places in the world where turtles come ashore to lay their eggs every night throughout the year.

If you want to watch turtles laying eggs, the Turtle Islans Park of Sellingan, Bakungan Kecil and Gulisan off Sandakan on Sabah’s east coast are the places to be, the news report said.