New home for elderly couple in Tutong

National 2 minutes, 3 seconds


AN ELDERLY couple who embraced Islam in 2011 now have a new home provided by Yayasan Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah (YSHHB).

Abdul Rahman Abdullah Yakin, 77, and wife Siti Aishah Md Arippin, 65, received the keys to the new house from YSHHB yesterday.

Siti Aisyah told The Brunei Times that they lived in their old house for more than 20 years since they got married.

The old house is decrepit. They ran a generator to power the lights.

The couple have been satisfied though as the opportunity to do their daily tasks has kept them productive at old age.

“The old house is actually a former paddy house,” Siti Aisyah said. “Since harvesting has been our daily activity after we got married, we decided to move into that house 20 years ago. And that house was the only choice we had last time.

“It is a blessing that government provides us with the new house and allowances. We don’t want a fancy way of living, it is enough what we have now. And the fact that we have our own paddy field gives us something to do every day,” she said.

Their farm does not produce bumper crops as they run on low budget. Siti Aisyah said their age stops them from going into commercial production.

The new house is built next to Abdul Rahman’s old house at Jalan Bang Pangan, Kampong Rambai in Tutong.

Due to the location of their house, the couple only depended on their foster children, Jurapihi Sidi and Norhayati Abdul Rahman, when they ran into problems, the wife said.

Norhayati lives with her family in Kuala Belait. “My family will visit our parents once a week to look out for them. Sometimes it’s hard to visit them as I have to adjust to my husband’s schedule. The only time we can visit them is weekends.’’

Siti Aisyah said they also receive help from the Department of Community Development (JAPEM) under Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports. The elderly couple receive a monthly pension allowance.

Hj Brahim Hj Ismail from YSHHB was present at the ceremony to hand over the house keys. The house has unfurnished three bedrooms, a living room, kitchen and toilet.

A house for assistance under the Housing Scheme Foundation is devoted to the Muslim converts who cannot afford to build their houses.

Home assistance is given free of charge to eligible recipients in accordance with the criteria established by the foundation.

The Brunei Times