Students share Hari Raya experience

National 1 minute, 46 seconds


WELL wishers from the Bruneian community, representatives of local and overseas corporate entities and heads of foreign diplomatic missions yesterday paid a visit to the residence of the Minister of Energy at the Prime Minister's Office, on occasion of the first day of Hari Raya Aidil Fitri.

Yang Berhormat Pehin Datu Singamanteri Colonel (Rtd) Dato Seri Setia (Dr) Hj Mohammad Yasmin Hj Umar's home eventually became a melting pot of visitors, including the British High Commissioner to Brunei, His Excellency Rob Fenn; US Ambassador to Brunei, Daniel L Shields; Total E&P Deep Offshore Borneo BV General Manager, Yves Grosjean; among others.

The Brunei Times met a group of exchange medical students from Japan and Germany at Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD), who shared their first-time Hari Raya experience in Brunei.

The eight students, who will complete their summer exchange programme soon, unanimously said experiencing Hari Raya here was "enjoyable" and that Bruneians are "very warm and accommodating".

All seven female students even wore the traditional baju kurung.

Yuke Ikeda, 20, said, "This is my first time experiencing Hari Raya in Brunei. I was so excited that I bought three baju kurungs."

Commenting on Brunei's "open house" tradition, she said it was "very nice" and a good opportunity for people to meet each other and exchange best wishes.

"I am very happy that our Bruneian friends have invited us to their houses," she said.

German student Eva Kathrin Jutta Gerda Lamadé, 18, said the experience so far has been wonderful as people have been friendly.

"I think this is a symbol of how Bruneian people are in general. They are so friendly and welcoming. It is really an honour to be here and experience this," she said, adding that she adores Brunei food.

Yasuhiro Hamada, 33, said inviting people into one's home is "very rare" in Japan. He said he was a little bit surprised this occurs in Brunei during Hari Raya, but said it was nice to see Bruneians being warm and accommodating.

The Brunei Times