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Sultan attends get-together in Australia

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, yesterday attended a get-together with students, citizens and residents of Brunei Darussalam, residing in Australia and New Zealand at the Park Hyatt Hotel, Melbourne, Australia.

Accompanying His Majesty at the vent was His Royal Highness Prince ‘Abdul Mateen.

On arrival, His Majesty was greeted by Minister of Education Datin Seri Setia Dr Hajah Romaizah binti Haji Mohd Salleh; President of the Brunei Students’ Union in Australia and New Zealand (BSUANZ) Nur Azmina Hannani binti Muhammad Shahrul Nizzam; and President of the Brunei Students Society in Melbourne Hasfarah Munerra binti Dr Mursidi.

His Majesty then attended a reception with student representatives as well as signed a commemorative parchment prior to the get-together ceremony.

At the ceremony, His Majesty in a titah said students abroad are exposed to various challenges, and whoever can face them, shows that they have resilience. In this regard, His Majesty urged the use of opportunities presented to develop themselves in terms of mindset and leadership quality as the students are the successors to the country’s leadership and need to be armed with knowledge in addressing the challenges of globalisation.

The monarch believes science and technology greatly influence life, in which digital platforms, such as social media, are decisive sources of knowledge, inspiration, ideas, collaboration and communication.

ABOVE & BELOW: 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 delivers a titah; and His Majesty and His Royal Highness Prince ‘Abdul Mateen in a group photo at the get-together ceremony. PHOTO: INFOFOTO
His Majesty with Bruneian students, citizens and residents in Australia and New Zealand. PHOTO: INFOFOTO
ABOVE & BELOW: His Majesty and His Royal Highness at the ceremony; and His Majesty signs a commemorative parchment. PHOTO: INFOFOTO

The integration of technology and artificial intelligence (AI), His Majesty said, makes the conveyance and dissemination of information more open, fast and easy. Therefore, His Majesty urged the use of these platforms responsibly, so as to not get caught in digital security issues such as academic malpractice, spreading of false information and becoming a victim of cybercrime.

Touching on the recent 40th National Day celebration, His Majesty said the celebration was a reminder that independence must be filled with responsibility, hard work, undivided loyalty and commitment to defending it, so that independence carries more meaning.

In addition, students are called to embrace the ‘independence’ spirit by studying hard, embedded with a sense of patriotism.

His Majesty also called on the students to engage in beneficial activities as a symbol of ‘Pemuda Harapan Bangsa dan Pemudi Tiang Negara’ (‘Youth are the Aspiration and Pillars of the Nation’) as well as to love the country no matter the circumstances and remember the Bruneian culture by cultivating spiritual values combined with the teaching of Ahli Sunnah Wal Jama’ah.

His Majesty concluded the titah by expressing hope that students will conduct themselves as law-abiding world citizens.

The ceremony began with the national anthem followed by the recitation of Surah Fatir Verses 28 to 31 by Muhammad Razqan bin Haji Abdul Razak from University of New South Wales, and its summary read by Nabil Iman bin Haji Azmee from Curtin University, Perth. A Doa Selamat was also recited by State Mufti Pehin Datu Seri Maharaja Dato Paduka Seri Setia (Dr) Ustaz Haji Awang Abdul Aziz bin Juned.

Meanwhile, the BSUANZ president in her welcoming address expressed that His Majesty’s presence at the ceremony reflected the monarch’s care and concern towards the livelihood, safety and well-being of the citizens of Brunei Darussalam, particularly students who are studying in Australia and New Zealand. It is a motivating factor for the students, especially in celebrating the Sultanate’s 40th National Day.

According to Nur Azmina Hannani, BSUANZ continues to organise activities in efforts to ignite the Bruneian spirit, such as the 40th National Day celebration.

In addition, cultural and religious events will continue to be held. At present, 180 students are studying in Australia and 31 students in New Zealand, comprising recipients of His Majesty’s Government scholarships under the Ministry of Education, Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Religious Affairs; Sultan Scholars of the Yayasan Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah; Education Loan Assistance Scheme (SBPP); Brunei Shell Petroleum Scholarship; BIBD ALAF scholarship as well as privately -financed students.

The ceremony also saw Nur Azmina Hannani present to His Majesty a pesambah, “Brunei, Australia and New Zealand Friendship Art”, an artwork by the Australian Indigenous community to illustrate the close friendship between the three countries – Brunei, Australia and New Zealand – through high-quality education.

The pesambah was also inspired by the Simpur flower from Brunei Darussalam, the Golden Wattle from Australia and the Kōwhai flower from New Zealand.

His Majesty proceeded to meet and greet over 600 students, citizens and residents of Brunei.