Over 1,500 participants turned up at Taman Haji Sir Muda Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien for the ‘Walk, Run and Cycle’ event yesterday, held in conjunction with World Cancer Day 2020. It was jointly organised by Pantai Jerudong Specialist Centre (PJSC) and Health Promotion Centre (HPC), Ministry of Health (MoH).
World Cancer Day is celebrated every February 4, led by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC). Its main objective is to unite the world in a collective voice to raise awareness on cancer and to encourage its prevention, early detection and treatment.
The theme (for 2019 to 2021) is ‘I Am and I Will.’ The campaign aims to empower and urge each individual to make a personal commitment and to inspire change and mobilise action in the fight against cancer, long after World Cancer Day has passed.
Supported by over 20 partners and sponsors from private and government sectors, as well as non-government organisations (NGOs), this year’s celebration is one of the nation’s biggest cancer campaigns thus far.
Minister of Health Dato Seri Setia Dr Haji Mohammad Isham bin Haji Jaafar was the guest of honour.
Minister of Home Affairs Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Kerna Dato Seri Setia (Dr) Haji Awang Abu Bakar bin Haji Apong, Minister of Primary Resources and Tourism Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Ali bin Haji Apong, Minister of Defence II Pehin Datu Lailaraja Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Haji Awang Halbi bin Haji Mohd Yussof, Minister of Foreign Affairs II Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Erywan bin Pehin Datu Pekerma Jaya Haji Mohd Yusof, Minister of Development Dato Seri Setia Ir Awang Haji Suhaimi bin Haji Gafar, Minister of Education Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Hamzah bin Haji Sulaiman, Minister of Transport and Infocommunications Dato Seri Setia Awang Abdul Mutalib bin Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Setia Dato Paduka Haji Mohammad Yusof, and 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 joined the 2km walk alongside cancer survivors and their families in a show of support.
The spouses of the ministers, senior MoH officials, and British High Commissioner to Brunei Darussalam Richard Lindsay also attended.
The ministers later officiated the four categories: 2km Fun Walk for Cancer Survivors, 3km Fun Walk, 10km Cycling and 11km Competitive Run. The Walk, Run and Cycle event was a culmination of activities to commemorate World Cancer Day, including the ‘Shine a Light’ initiative which illuminated the Jerudong Park Country Club (JPCC) Crystal Arch in the colours orange and blue.
Dato Seri Setia Dr Haji Mohammad Isham advised the public on the dangers of cancer, and called for support for the government’s desire to tackle the disease.
A host of activities were lined up including health booths highlighting cancer awareness initiatives by partners such as the Brunei Breast Cancer Support Group (BBCSG), Brunei Council on Social Welfare (MKM), Children’s Cancer Foundation (YASKA), Jerudong Park Medical Centre (JPMC) and Gleneagles JPMC; Coffee with Doctor – an avenue for the public to talk with PJSC’s specialist doctors about cancer; a Tai Chi session for individuals who preferred an alternative exercise to the walk, run and cycle; fitness activity challenges, games and quizzes.
As an NGO, the UICC is the largest and oldest international cancer organisation, founded in 1933 in Geneva, Switzerland. It has 1,150 member organisations in 173 countries, including Brunei Darussalam.