Chinese man embraces Islam

National 2 minutes, 32 seconds


A CHINESE man fulfilled his long awaited dream of becoming a Muslim at a ceremony held at the residence of his friend, Hj Esa Kula in Kg Sungai Tilong yesterday.

The 31-year-old Chinese man, Ong Ed Red, had chosen Muhammad Red Uzair Abdullah Ong as his Muslim name.

“Since I was young, I have always been surrounded by Islam and I still remember memorising the names of all Muslim prayers a long time ago, as it was regularly aired on the TV,” he said during an interview with The Brunei Times.

“When I was in my secondary level (of education), I was also taught (Islamic subjects) and Melayu Islam Beraja (MIB) there my interest (towards Islam) began,” he added.

Muhd Red Uzair said the most interesting aspects of Islam was how strong characters can be developed among Muslims who constantly practised and performed their religious duties.

“For instance, being able to practise five times prayer a day constantly helps build your belief (and) patience, and the commitment you display means that there is obviously nothing you cannot do,” he said.

Although Muhd Red Uzair was the first to embrace Islam in his direct family, and amongst three siblings, he said he was not the first to convert among his cousins.

However he was grateful and happy that his family was quite supportive of his decision to become a Muslim.

Besides having friends who are mostly Muslims, Muhd Red Uzair said his girlfriend was also one of the reasons why he chose to embrace Islam, as she had always been the one who showed him the proper ways of being a Muslim.

Muhd Red Uzair is currently in his final year for a bachelor degree in Accounting at International Graduate Studies (IGS) College, and had also been an officer in Baiduri Bank since 2007.

He shared that for the time being, he plans finish his studies, to tie the knot with his girlfriend and to look forward to a happy life.

During the ceremony, Muhd Red Uzair took an oath declaring his faith in the oneness of Allah (SWT) and recited the Syahadah (declaration of faith) in the presence of a religious officer from the Islamic Da’wah Centre.

Present to witness the ceremony was the Deputy Minister of Home Affairs, Pehin Datu Lailaraja Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Hj Awang Halbi Hj Mohd Yussof.

The ceremony was further enlivened with the recital of Dikir Marhaban to welcome the new convert, who was then sprinkled with the shredded scented flowers (bunga rampai) by his friends and families.

Towards the end of the ceremony, Muhd Red Uzair received a gift from the Deputy Minister of Home Affairs, who in turn also received a gift from the owner of the house.

Also present was the Permanent Secretary at Ministry of Home Affairs, Dato Paduka Dr Hj Affendy Pehin Orang Kaya Saiful Mulok Dato Seri Paduka Hj Abidin and Acting Deputy Permanent Secretaries, Yahya Hj Abd Rahman and Pg Hj Mohammad Ali Pg Hj Othman.

The Brunei Times