Former RBAF commander passes away

National 1 minute, 56 seconds

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

FORMER commander of the Royal Brunei Armed Forces (RBAF) Pehin Datu Indera Setia Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Hj Sulaiman Hj Damit passed away yesterday morning at the age of 75.

Former RBAF commanders and current and former ministers paid their respects and performed mass prayers led by State Mufti Yang Berhormat Pehin Datu Seri Maharaja Dato Paduka Seri Setia (Dr) Ustaz Hj Awg Abdul Aziz Juned which took place at the residence of the late Pehin Major General Dato Hj Sulaiman in Kg Panchor Papan in Tutong.

Pehin Major General Dato Hj Sulaiman served as the RBAF’s second commander from 1990 to 1994, succeeding Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Dewa Major General (Rtd) Dato Seri Pahlawan Hj Mohammad Hj Daud, who was also present to pay his respects.

“He was my dear colleague in the armed forces. We joined the armed forces together at the same time in the first intake.

“I (will) remember him as a very loyal colleague; we have been good friends for 56 years. We have been very close, and I shall miss him very much,” Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Dewa Major General (Rtd) Dato Seri Pahlawan Hj Mohammad Hj Daud, who served as RBAF commander from 1985 to 1990, said in an interview during the burial proceedings.

Former RBAF commander and current Minister of Culture Youth and Sports Yang Berhormat Pehin Datu Lailaraja Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Hj Awg Halbi Hj Mohd Yusof shared similar sentiments.

“This is a great loss to us. He has done a lot for the armed forces and country and has many great achievements,” said the minister, who served under Pehin Major General Dato Hj Sulaiman in the RBAF.

In his curriculum vitae shared by his eldest daughter, 39-year-old Halimahtun Saadiah, Pehin Major General Dato Hj Sulaiman was enlisted in the first intake of Askar Melayu Brunei (Brunei Malay Regiment) — the RBAF’s initial official name — in 1960.

Since his enlistment, he received several honorary achievements, among them being the first degree Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah Medal (PHBS) in 1968, and was bestowed the title ‘Yang Dimuliakan Pehin Datu Indera Setia’ by His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam in 1974.

Pehin Major General Dato Hj Sulaiman, buried in Sugan Muslim Cemetery, is survived by his wife, three sons, two daughters and four grandchildren.

The Brunei Times