| Rokiah Mahmud, Daniel Lim & Izah Azahari |
THE upcoming 73rd birthday celebration of 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 officially commenced yesterday with the hoisting of a giant-sized Brunei national flag in Bandar Seri Begawan, near the Yayasan Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Complex.
Yang Amat Mulia Pengiran Lela Cheteria Sahibun Najabah Pengiran Anak Haji Abdul Aziz bin Pengiran Jaya Negara Pengiran Haji Abu Bakar, the Chief of Adat Istiadat Negara in his capacity as Advisor of the National Executive Committee for His Majesty’s 73rd birthday celebration was the guest of honour.
The ceremony commenced with the recitation of Surah Al-Fatihah and Doa Selamat by Begawan Pehin Khatib Dato Paduka Haji Mustafa bin Haji Murat.
The giant-sized national flag measuring 3.7m x 7.5m was received by the guest of honour, and later handed over to the Royal Brunei Navy (RBN).
Flanking the RBN personnel were 73 flag-bearers from the Fire and Rescue Department and Ministry of Home Affairs.
The flag was then hoisted by personnel from the RBN to the accompaniment of the national anthem played by the Royal Brunei Police Force (RBPF) band and a choir group from the Language and Literature Bureau (DBP), Bandar Seri Begawan Municipal Department, Fire and Rescue Department and Ministry of Home Affairs.
Later on, national flags measuring 2.5m by 1.2m and posters for His Majesty’s 73rd birthday celebration were handed by the guest of honour to the district officers of Brunei-Muara, Belait, Tutong and Temburong.
Additional flag-hoisting ceremonies were later held for the Brunei-Muara, Tutong, Belait and Temburong districts shortly after this event.
In the Belait District, the ceremony was held at the Menara Cendana Kenangan, where the guest of honour was Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Health Haji Abdul Manap bin Othman.
Legislative Council members Yang Berhormat Haji Abdul Hamid bin Haji Mumin and Yang Berhormat Hanapi bin Mohd Siput, Belait District Officer Ramlee bin Haji Jamudin, Assistant Belait District Officer Abdol Hazis bin Ahad and the executive committee members of His Majesty’s 73rd birthday celebration for the Belait District were also present.
The guest of honour at the flag-hoisting ceremony for the Brunei-Muara District was Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Defence Brigadier General (Rtd) Dato Seri Pahlawan Shahril Anwar bin Haji Ma’awiah.
In the Tutong District, the ceremony was witnessed by Permanent Secretary (Core Education) at the Ministry of Education Dr Shamsiah Zuraini Kanchanawati binti Haji Tajuddin, while Permanent Secretary (Manpower) at the Ministry of Energy, Manpower and Industry Haji Zolkiflee bin Haji Abdul Karim was present at the flag-hoisting ceremony in the Temburong District.
Brunei citizens and permanent residents are urged to hoist the national flag at residences, government buildings and business premises with effect from July 1, while those bestowed with titles are urged to hoist their personal flags.
The giant-sized national flag will be flown for the duration of the festivities in honour of His Majesty’s 73rd birthday until July 31.