Lyna Mohamad, Hakim Hayat & Aziz Idris
Brunei Darussalam will celebrate Hari Raya Aidilfitri tomorrow as the hilal or new moon of Syawal 1442 Hijrah was not sighted at vantage points set up yesterday evening.
The announcement was made last night with the consent 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, following reports from officials, and was broadcast on Radio Television Brunei (RTB).
Officials assigned to the moon-sighting events at the five assigned locations throughout the country were unable to locate the crescent moon of Syawal which was confirmed by the Chief Syar’ie Judge.
Confirmation of the results was delivered to Minister of Religious Affairs Pehin Udana Khatib Dato Paduka Seri Setia Ustaz Haji Awang Badaruddin bin Pengarah Dato Paduka Haji Awang Othman in his capacity as President of Brunei Islamic Religious Council (MUIB) in the presence of other members of MUIB – Minister of Health Dato Seri Setia Dr Haji Mohd Isham bin Haji Jaafar, Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office Dato Seri Setia Haji Awang Abdul Mokti bin Haji Mohd Daud; Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Haji Aminuddin Ihsan bin Pehin Orang Kaya Saiful Mulok Dato Seri Paduka Haji Abidin, Attorney General Haji Ahmad bin Pehin Orang Kaya Laila Setia Bakti Diraja Dato Laila Utama Haji Awang Isa, Chief Syar’ie Judge Pehin Orang Kaya Paduka Seri Utama Dato Paduka Seri Setia Haji Awang Salim bin Haji Besar, Syariah Appeal Court Judge Pehin Orang Kaya Paduka Setia Raja Dato Paduka Seri Setia Haji Awang Suhaili bin Haji Mohiddin; and Deputy Minister of Religious Affairs Pengiran Dato Seri Paduka Haji Bahrom bin Pengiran Haji Bahar as Deputy President of MUIB.
The moon-sighting at the DST Tower in Jerudong was attended by Minister of Development Dato Seri Setia Ir Awang Haji Suhaimi bin Haji Gafar as well as senior officials from the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), Ministry of Development, Ministry of Transport and Infocommunications and Ministry of Religious Affairs (MoRA).
Similar moon-sighting events were held at Bukit Agok in Brunei-Muara District, Bukit Ambog in Tutong District, and Bukit Lumut in Belait District, attended by Syar’ie judges and officers of the Syariah Courts, State Judiciary Department, officials from the State Mufti’s Office as well as officials from MoRA and Survey Department of the Ministry of Development.
Earlier, a religious event while waiting for the moon-sighting results was held at the Multaqa Hall, of the MoRA.
The event began with the recitation of verses from Al-Quran by Muhd Yusuf Haikal bin Mohd Hashim, an Institut Tahfiz Al-Quran Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah student, followed by the recitation of Tahlil and Doa Arwah and mass Maghrib prayer led by Special Grade Mosque Affairs Officer Asminan bin Haji Chuchu.
The call to Maghrib prayers was performed by Assistant Religious Officer, Haj Management Department Mohammad Zharfan bin Haji Ahmad.
Similar to the previous year, the country will observe another three-day public holiday weekend for the festivities beginning tomorrow.
In view of this, the Ministry of Health (MoH) has issued updated guidelines on Hari Raya gatherings.
The MoH advised large families with limited house space to hold gatherings at a hall and to carry out the scanning of the BruHealth QR code at entry points.
Those showing signs of infection or feeling unwell should refrain from visiting or visited by close family members during Hari Raya.
Shaking hands and hugs can be substituted by placing the hand on the chest, along with a smile or a nod of the head, as a sign of respect and greeting.
Proper hygiene etiquette should be observed at all times, while the sharing of eating and drinking utensils such as spoons, forks, plates and cups should be avoided.