Minister outlines MCYS’ latest developments in dialogue session with LegCo members

|     Rokiah Mahmud     |

THE Ministry of Culture Youth and Sports (MCYS) and departments under it held a dialogue session with members of the Legislative Council (LegCo) at the Brunei History Centre in the capital yesterday.

The dialogue session was chaired by Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Awang Haji Aminuddin Ihsan bin Pehin Orang Kaya Saiful Mulok Dato Seri Paduka Haji Abidin, who welcomed members of the LegCo led by LegCo member Yang Berhormat Khairunnisa binti Haji Ash’ari.

In his welcoming address, the minister explained that the MCYS has taken several measures in further enhancing its strategic planning and direction through internal dialogue sessions, as well as reaching out to strategic partners in both government and non-governmental organisations (NGOs).

“Our ministry hopes to support the vision 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 who called on all parties to work as a team in carrying out their responsibilities, rather than singularly,” he said.

The minister outlined several efforts undertaken by the MCYS after the previous LegCo meeting, which included collaborating with the Ministry of Energy, Manpower and Industry to provide opportunities for youth entrepreneurship during National Youth Day 2018.

Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Awang Haji Aminuddin Ihsan bin Pehin Orang Kaya Saiful Mulok Dato Seri Paduka Haji Abidin speaks during the session
Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports Datin Paduka Dr Hajah Norlila binti Dato Paduka Haji Abdul Jalil at the session

“The two ministries will continue to cooperate so that the objective of this year’s National Youth Day theme, ‘Entrepreneurship and Leadership’, can be effectively supported for three years. Eventually, monitoring will be carried out by the Youth Entrepreneurship Steering Committee, which I will chair with the assistance of the Deputy Minister of Energy, Manpower and Industry. The goal is for youth entrepreneurs to be managed, assisted and mentored towards achieving success and resilience,” he said.

Additionally, the MCYS is working with the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism (MPRT) in reviving the Young Farmers Programme, along with several agricultural companies that have been identified as future strategic partners.

“The MPRT will provide the foundation, land equity and relevant courses to interested youth, while our ministry is responsible for identifying youth with potential and determination.

“Towards this, we have taken steps to promote this agricultural programme to students in higher educational institutions, such as the Institute of Brunei Technical Education (IBTE), while inviting youth to become involved in the Young Farmers Programme,” said the minister.

During the dialogue session, the minister disclosed most local youth are unaware of the existence of the National Youth Policy, “More steps need to be taken towards promoting the National Youth Policy in a more comprehensive and effective way. Our ministry has already discussed with the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Home Affairs to come together in organising an effective public information campaign in all four districts.”

The minister also announced the MCYS had been allocated a budget under the 11th National Development Plan for the upgrading of the Kota Batu Museum and Arts Gallery at Dermaga Diraja.

“This demonstrates our country’s long-term commitment towards preserving our history, while providing opportunities for the promotion of arts and leaving a positive impact on the tourism sector by improving and optimising these iconic buildings,” he said.

Current plans were also announced for a permanent building in Kampong Rimba, which would provide treatment, training and work opportunities for the special needs community. “Alhamdulillah, the government has approved of the budget for the construction of this building, which will hopefully open up opportunities for those with special needs, so that they too can contribute towards our country’s socio-economic development.”

In terms of sports development, the minister said that the recent Brunei Darussalam National Games (SKBD) had provided them with plenty of fresh sporting talent and collaborative opportunities with other ministries, especially the Ministry of Education.

“The Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium has completed its first phase of upgrading, with the second phase currently being carried out. These upgrades include the construction of arenas for sports such as wushu, karate-do, taekwondo and silat,” he said.