Thursday, July 25, 2024
31 C
Brunei Town

Brunei demonstrated resilience during pandemic: Permanent secretary

James Kon

During the pandemic, almost every organisation established protective measures with the common goal of ensuring the welfare and good health of the workers. This involved a heavy reliance on digital technology and communication platforms in responding to such pandemic emergency.

The Sultanate demonstrated her resilience in facing the challenging health issue, ensure workers’ welfare and safety, and able to adapt to the new norms, proving to the world that the country could cope with the difficult situation.

Brunei’s ability to address the health and safety challenges brought about by COVID-19 was underscored by Permanent Secretary of the Department of Energy at the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) Haji Azhar bin Haji Yahya, who is Interim Chief Executive Officer of Safety, Health And Environment National Authority (SHENA), in his welcoming remarks at the closing ceremony of SHENA’s safety month in conjunction with the World Day for Safety and Health At Work as part of Brunei Mid-Year Conference and Exhibition 2022 (Brunei MYCE 2022) Energy Week at the International Convention Centre in Berakas yesterday.

From discussions during the Safety Month’s events, he highlighted that it was clear that the mitigation success in tackling the pandemic was owed to the integration of workplace safety with public health, coupled with the sustained collaboration between the authorities, government agencies, public and private sectors, and the public.

He said, “This year’s World Day for Safety and Health at Work theme is ‘Act together to build a positive safety and health culture’.

“I am happy to report that SHENA has been able to pull active participation from ministries and government agencies, companies, industries, as well as professionals and trade organisations, through those Safety Month’s events. Through this, we hope SHENA is able to drive and strengthen positive safety and health culture in every organisation as this is necessary and fundamental in preventing and reducing work related accidents.”

Permanent Secretary of the Department of Energy at the Prime Minister’s Office Haji Azhar bin Haji Yahya. PHOTOS: JAMES KON
The permanent secretary and Deputy Permanent Secretary of the Department of Energy at the Prime Minister’s Office Pengiran Haji Jamra Weira bin Pengiran Haji Petra in a group photo at the event

The events, he said, “were meant to help better understand on the what’s, how’s and why’s the culture is important to those directly involved, as well as impacted by activities, in the workplace.

“This understanding is to help strengthen focus on safety and to improve safety performance, thereby creating a workforce that is engaged, competent, and motivated to work safely.

“It is critical that the understanding and knowledge gained, the challenges talked about and recommendations put forward, will be addressed further and implemented in the workplace, for the improvements and benefits of both the current workers and the future workforce”.

During the Safety Month opening on April 28, he noted that E-SHENA, an online registration portal (ORP) was launched.

Haji Azhar said, “E-SHENA is meant to allow organisations to utilise the digital technology platform in facilitating compliance to the law and regulations associated with safety and health at the workplace.

“The ORP provides users with a convenient mean for registration of their workplace safety and health officers, radiation protection officers and general workers, as well as applying licences online.” Another crucial element in embedding a positive safety and health culture in a workplace, he said, “is effective communication. Another crucial one is active participation and empowerment of workers on safety matters. This is to allow them to feel that they are being taken care of and entrusted to make decisions to avoid unsafe act and situations.

“Eventually, this will lead to a positive working environment, resulting in a more productive business performance”.

He iterated, “SHENA seeks the strong support and commitment from all of you at personal and company level to collaborate and work together. Everyone has a critical duty to achieve the goal and together we can make a difference to help prevent the next accident.”