A recent visit to Taman Mahkota Jubli Emas broke my heart. I still remember the day it opened, and how excited everyone was about having a public park that was so breathtakingly beautiful.
But fast forward a few years and it is now in such a sad state. There are cracked or missing tiles everywhere, and the toilets seemed like they have been regularly neglected. The rubbish bins are perpetually overflowing with trash, and plastic waste can be found in all nooks and crannies.
There is a joke in my circle of friends that we Bruneians don’t deserve nice things. In this case, it’s true. We have been gifted a state-of-the-art park to enjoy, and the least we can do is maintain it properly. Yet, it seems beyond our capability to understand the importance of upkeep.
I don’t know if the lack of civic-mindedness in the population is to blame for the deterioration of the park. But something needs to be done to restore its former glory, be it the imposition of stiff penalty for vandals and litterbugs or the reintroduction of civic lessons in schools.
Whatever it is, we need to start doing it soon.