| Hakim Hayat |
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, Minister of Defence and Supreme Commander of the Royal Brunei Armed Forces (RBAF) yesterday graced the Grand Parade for the 56th RBAF anniversary celebrations at the Royal Brunei Navy (RBN) Base in Muara.
Accompanying His Majesty was His Royal Highness Prince General Haji Al-Muhtadee Billah, the Crown Prince and Senior Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office, and General of the RBAF.
Greeting His Majesty and His Royal Highness upon arrival at the RBN parade ground were Deputy Minister of Defence, First Admiral (Rtd) Dato Seri Pahlawan Abdul Aziz bin Haji Mohd Tamit; and Commander of the RBAF, Pehin Datu Pekerma Jaya Major General Dato Paduka Seri Mohd Tawih bin Abdullah.
At the parade ground, His Majesty received the royal salute and inspected the parade contingent comprising 1,056 RBAF personnel from the Royal Brunei Land Force (RBLF), Royal Brunei Navy (RBN), Royal Brunei Air Force (RBAirF), Training Institute RBAF (TI RBAF), the Special Forces Regiment (SFR) and Women Military Personnel led by Commander Sapry bin Haji Serudi @ Haji Seruji of the RBN in his capacity as Parade Commander.
After His Majesty’s titah, a prayer was recited by the Head of RBAF Religious Department, Commander Haji Ainolnizam bin Haji Ibrahim to bless the event.
His Majesty then once again received the royal salute followed by the sail-past from KDB Darussalam and fly-past by RBAirF aircraft.
From the parade grounds, His Majesty and His Royal Highness next proceeded aboard the KDB Daruttaqwa to witness an arena performance showcasing RBAF’s maritime interdiction operations capabilities.
His Majesty also toured static exhibitions set up by different units under the RBAF and Ministry of Defence.
At the Petty Officers’ Mess, His Majesty and His Royal Highness were presented with a pesambah in the form of an armour breast plate jacket as well as a shield inspired by Islamic traditions from selected RBAF senior and junior non-commissioned officers.
His Majesty and His Royal Highness then proceeded to the RBN Officers’ Mess for a luncheon.
His Majesty was then invited to cut a cake marking RBAF’s 56th anniversary and presented with a pesambah in the form of a ‘General’s Sword’ by RBAF officers.
In addition to meeting up with current RBAF officers and personnel, His Majesty also took the time to meet former RBAF officers and personnel who have been appointed as members of the Legislative Council as well as penghulus and village heads.
The ceremony concluded with the signing of the royal parchment and His Majesty and His Royal Highness having a group photograph with members of the Defence Executive Committee, service commanders, RBAF Chief of Staff, RBAF head of inspectorate, former deputy ministers of defence, former commanders of the RBAF, military and civilian directors, and commandants.
This year’s RBAF anniversary celebrations theme ‘Together in Accomplishing the National Vision’ underlines the RBAF’s continuous commitment as a key security institution contributing to the nation’s progress and development by ensuring a safe and peaceful environment through the steady provision of defence and security.
The celebrations, traditionally held every May 31, was brought to a later date out of respect for the holy month of Ramadhan.