WHILE almost 200 Brunei Shell Petroleum (BSP) and Brunei Shell Marketing Company Sdn Bhd (BSM) staff marched at the Taman Haji Sir Muda Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien joining around 25,000 participants in the annual grand parade, out at sea, some 96km from shore, the spirit of patriotism and pride was just as strong.
Not wanting to miss the celebration, some 50 employees on one of BSP’s key production platforms, Fairley 4, joined the nation to celebrate the momentous event of the 35th National Day in their very own way.
The night before, the platform residents gathered to perform the mass Maghrib prayer including the recitation of the Surah Yaasiin and Doa Selamat.
As early as 6am the following morning, united in their orange coveralls, the celebration kicked off with the singing of the national anthem Allah Peliharakan Sultan.
Next, the crew handed over the national flag to Production Lead at Fairley 4 Jaafaruddin bin Haji Abdul Latip.
Such celebration would not be complete without reciting the National Day oath led by Rosli bin Haji Jinin, who has been working offshore for 35 years.
Menjayakan Wawasan Negara
This year’s celebration theme was Menjayakan Wawasan Negara or Accomplishing the National Vision.
For Fairley 4 residents, to help achieve Brunei Vision 2035, it is vital for them to take on the ‘I AM BSP’ mindset of accountability, focus and collaborating.
Jaafaruddin, in his early 50s and a proud father of four, believed that sharing knowledge, coaching, trust and motivation are the key drivers to developing the young generation.
“Personally, it gives me a great sense of satisfaction. The young generation nowadays learn pretty quickly in terms of skills and knowledge which is vital for their growth and development towards building their competency. It is certainly very rewarding seeing them succeed. And not only that – they can even do the job better than myself!” he said.
Jaafaruddin also felt that trust is very important. “Age is not a factor here. We learn from each other and adopt best practices, young and old. There are also female colleagues on the platform and we treat them as equals. They are as competent as their male counterparts doing similar jobs,” he said.
For Nurhazimah binti Abdul Rahman, 27, this will be her fourth year at the platform.
“During my days at Jefri Bolkiah College of Engineering (MKJB), I already had my mind set – I wanted to work offshore, for BSP. I took my on-the-job training at BSP seriously, and hard work paid off when I was taken onboard, offshore,” she said.
“It was tough at first. I had no idea how challenging the role of a Production Operator would be – most of all working out at the fields and handling bulky equipment such as a valve. With the support and great teamwork from my fellow crew members, it became possible to ensure that we keep production going, maintain integrity and operate safely,” she added.
Noorazman bin Haji Mohd Noor, no stranger to offshore work, took up the challenge to contribute as a Bruneian to help fuel Brunei’s future in a different way.
“I have been the Resident Manager at Ampa 9 and Fairley 4 coming to 10 years now. My main responsibility back then was to oversee the catering services operations and ensure that food served at the platforms met hygiene standards for all the menus served during the two-week course of stay of each crew shift,” he said.
In September last year, seeking new challenges and development opportunities, he decided to move out of his comfort zone and try something new.
“I was lucky that I got accepted as a Field Operator under Brudesh Engineering and Management Sdn Bhd, a contractor company engaged under BSP. With the relevant training and support from my BSP supervisor, I feel even more driven to join the rest of those working offshore to help increase production for the company to boost Brunei’s economy not only for us but generations to come,” he said.
Peter Dichrow from Canada who works as a coach to the offshore residents between Ampa and Fairley 4, has been in Brunei for about 18 months and celebrated National Day offshore for the first time.
“To see everybody so proud of the National Day celebration is really something. It’s not only about the past, but also about looking ahead to the future. The biggest way I felt that I have contributed to coaching Bruneians towards achieving the nation’s vision, was to bring in alternative perspectives on how best to deliver on the day-to-day job,” Dichrow said. “It takes time for people to adapt and understand change. I always think of it in such a way that you need respect and trust – treat them the way you would like your children to be treated,” he added.
Challenging and exciting
Being part of the offshore workforce is both challenging and exciting, interviews with two female crew members showed.
Hafizah binti Johari, the first female Installation Services Supervisor on Fairley 4, admitted that she had to start from scratch on her current role. Previously she had worked onshore in the Aviation and Power and Amenities Department.
“I enjoy the job here very much more than when I was office-based. Accountability is very important in my daily routine as it is my responsibility to ensure that the welfare and logistics of the offshore residents are managed well. My priority is to get everyone back home safely every day which I hope will help improve our safety performance towards no safety incidents and zero harm to people.”
Control and Automation Technician Nur Amalina binti Samat is no average girl, and she sums it all up when she said, “I love the fact that I can do a man’s job: I have also been trained to work in the fire emergency response team, as a crane operator, first aider and helideck landing officer. This National Day celebration means a lot to me as it marks my third year in my first job and I’m so lucky that I am one of the thousands to help fuel Brunei’s future towards Brunei Vision 2035.”