‘Public speakers are leaders in the making’

National 1 minute, 51 seconds


ACTIVITIES geared towards improving public speaking are in line with our vision of seeing more youth step forward to become the nation’s Toastmasters as well as leaders.

Mohd Rano Iskandar, organising chairman of the Toastmasters District 87 Semi-Annual Conference, made the comment yesterday while speaking at the event, which is being held at the Rizqun International Hotel in Gadong.

More than 100 local and international Toastmasters are taking part.

Present as the guest of honour to launch the conference was Minister of Primary Resources and Tourism Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Hj Ali Apong.

The two-day conference, which ends today, carries the theme ‘Be the Difference’ and features educational workshops conducted by public speakers, trainers and industry leaders from various countries.

The event aims to increase awareness about Toastmasters and expose its benefits to people in the sultanate.

Mohd Rano said in his speech that besides enhancing participants’ public speaking or communication skills, the conference also provides them with an opportunity to learn more about the culture and heritage of the sultanate.

The event also features two world champions of public speaking, Dananjaya J Hettiarachchi from Sri Lanka and Darren Tay from Singapore.

Speaking to The Brunei Times, Dananjaya, who was the 2014 World Champion, said Brunei has the opportunity to produce skilled Toastmasters and public speakers.

“Brunei has established a Toastmasters club. It’s a great place for everyone to start if they want to learn public speaking. They teach the basics at a very low cost.

“It’s an amazing programme from the US that’s offered around the world,” he said, adding that it’s a great start for those who have problems with anxiety, confidence and nervousness.

He said that in the next 10 years, every industry will need more people who have public speaking skills.

“In the next 10 years, people with public speaking skills are going to be needed in every industry because everyone or every employee has to be able to tell about their story, products or services.”

The event also featured a speech competition among English and Mandarin contestants under District 87, which comprises Brunei, East Malaysia and Indonesia.

The next Toastmaster’s conference will be held in May 2017 in Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia.

The Brunei Times