Haj Basic Course well received, says minister

|    Danial Norjidi    |

THE Haj Management Department, Ministry of Religious Affairs (MoRA) through the Haj and Umrah Guidance Division held a Doa Selamat and get-together ceremony with intending Haj pilgrims for 1440H/2019 at the Bridex Banquet Hall in Jerudong yesterday.

The event aimed to celebrate the intending Haj pilgrims who will be performing the Haj this year after completing their Haj course and to strengthen ties.

It was also held to seek blessings from Allah the Almighty for the intending pilgrims’ protection and safety, and hopes to facilitate their Haj rituals with the hope to get the mabrur (perfect) Haj.

The proceedings began with the recitation of Doa Selamat by Assistant Religious Officer Haji Zilani bin Haji Bungsu, followed by welcoming remarks from the Acting Director of Haj Management Haji Abdullah bin Haji Mohammad.

The event continued with a speech from the guest of honour, Minister of Religious Affairs Pehin Udana Khatib Dato Paduka Seri Setia Ustaz Haji Awang Badaruddin bin Pengarah Dato Paduka Haji Awang Othman.

The minister noted that towards ensuring that intending Haj pilgrims are prepared to carry out worship activities correctly, a Haj Basic Course was introduced in January and February 2019 as an addition to the Haj Guidance Course.

Minister of Religious Affairs Pehin Udana Khatib Dato Paduka Seri Setia Ustaz Haji Awang Badaruddin bin Pengarah Dato Paduka Haji Awang Othman at the event. – RAHWANI ZAHARI

It was shared that this Haj Basic Course was held over six sessions every Friday in all districts, and the minister highlighted that this new initiative was well received, recording 6,403 participants (3,530 female and 2,873 male).

The minister also noted that there are efforts to improve Haj services. He shared that as one such effort, earlier this year the Haj Management Department held early discussions with companies offering Haj packages and shared suggestions for the possibility of offering low-cost Haj package choices that are also comfortable for those who would select them, in addition to the other Haj packages.

He said that this follows a number of requests and suggestions from the public and stakeholders.

The minister shared that there are also requests and suggestions from stakeholders for Haj packages that allow people to perform the Haj within a shorter period than the normal Haj packages.

He added that all of this will be considered by the Haj Management Department and will be studied and checked well for their appropriateness in line with existing regulations.

The minister later met with the intending Haj pilgrims.

Also present were Deputy Minister of Religious Affairs Pengiran Dato Seri Paduka Haji Bahrom bin Pengiran Haji Bahar; Deputy Minister of Finance and Economy (Fiscal) Dato Seri Paduka Awang Ahmaddin bin Haji Abdul Rahman; Ambassador of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to Brunei Darussalam Emad bin Abdul Aziz bin Saad Al Muhanna; Permanent Secretary at the MoRA Dato Seri Setia Haji Abdul Aziz bin Orang Kaya Maharaja Lela Haji Yussof; Permanent Secretary (Policy and Fiscal) at the Ministry of Finance and Economy Norliah binti Haji Kula; Ra’es of Religious Teachers University College of Seri Begawan (KUPU SB) Dr Haji Adanan bin Haji Basar; Acting Deputy Permanent Secretary (Policy and Religious) at the MoRA Haji Hardifadhilah bin Haji Mohd Salleh; senior government officers; and officers from Haj and Umrah operators.