| Hakim Hayat |
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 graced the Grand Parade for the Royal Brunei Armed Forces (RBAF) 58th anniversary celebration yesterday.
Upon arrival at the parade grounds of the mini stadium in Bolkiah Garrison, His Majesty was received by Minister of Defence II Pehin Datu Lailaraja Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Haji Awang Halbi bin Haji Mohd Yussof and Commander of the RBAF Major General Pengiran Dato Paduka Seri Aminan bin Pengiran Haji Mahmud.
His Majesty was accompanied by His Royal Highness Prince Haji Al-Muhtadee Billah, the Crown Prince and Senior Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office; and His Royal Highness 920 Captain (U) Prince ‘Abdul Mateen.
His Majesty proceeded to receive the royal salute and inspected the parade contingent comprising a 1,058-member-strong RBAF line-up made up of officers from the Royal Brunei Land Force (RBLF), Royal Brunei Navy (RBN), Royal Brunei Air Force (RBAirF), Training Institute RBAF (TI RBAF), Special Forces Regiment (SFR), and Women Military Personnel.
Parade Commander 632 Lieutenant Colonel Amirul Adly bin Haji Ali led the parade.
This year’s parade saw officers from all three RBAF services stepping out in their new operational uniforms made up of Digital Disruptive Pattern (D2P) pattern fabric. RBN officers now don sports operational uniforms in navy blue, while RBAirF personnel were seen debuting their new garb which now comes in grey.
The RBLF uniform retains the same pattern and colour, but now sports different pocket designs and shorter sleeves.
His Majesty also delivered a titah in which he highlighted the vital role the RBAF must play “to ensure that the country remains vigilant amid the prevalence of increasingly rapid, dynamic and complex global security threats”.
Head of the RBAF Religious Department Commander Haji Ainolnizam bin Haji Ibrahim, RBN read a Doa Selamat to bless the event.
After this, His Majesty once again received the royal salute. This was followed by a flypast by a formation of RBAirF aircraft.
The highlight of the day was an arena demonstration showcasing the capabilities of the SFR, with the participating officers – which included His Royal Highness 920 Captain (U) Prince ‘Abdul Mateen taking part in direct vehicle ambush and interdiction sequences.
His Majesty later consented to award the Honorary Membership in the SFR to His Royal Highness 920 Captain (U) Prince ‘Abdul Mateen.
The monarch also viewed static exhibitions from different units under the Ministry of Defence and RBAF, including the new installation of the RBAF Recruitment Office.
His Majesty then proceeded to the Bolkiah Garrison Officers’ Mess for a group photo-op with members of the Defence Executive Committee, service commanders, RBAF Chief of Staff, RBAF Head of Inspectorate, former deputy ministers of Defence, former commanders of the RBAF, military and civilian directors and commandants.
His Majesty was presented with a pesambah from the RBAF officers in the form of an abstract art called Difa’ Al-Amni (which translates to ‘Maintaining Peace’), and two other pesambah from RBAF senior and junior non-commissioned officers – a Garmin D2 Delta Px Pilot watch and a Garmin Foretex 701 Ballistic Edition Military-Grade GPS navigator.
His Majesty then signed the Royal Parchment and cut a cake to mark RBAF’s 58th anniversary, before attending a luncheon and taking part in a Junjung Ziarah session with the RBAF officers and former RBAF officers and personnel.
This year’s RBAF 58th anniversary theme, ‘Together in Accomplishing the National Vision’, underlines the RBAF’s continuous commitment as Brunei’s key security institution in contributing to the nation’s progress and development, by ensuring a safe and peaceful environment through the steady provision of defence and security.
The celebration, traditionally held on May 31 annually, was brought forward to a later date out of respect for the holy month of Ramadhan.