Sultan visits RBAF Training Institute
By Azlan Othman

His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam made a working visit to the Training Institute of Royal Brunei Armed Forces in Penanjong Garrison yesterday.

His Majesty visited various facilities including School of Studies, which produces qualified boys wing and provides general courses to RBAF personnel, a gymnasium to train army recruits, and the Recruit Company and Course Company, which trains personnel who are already working.

His Majesty also toured the dining hall for recruits and the 30-metre shooting range where His Majesty tested his firing skills using silent, automatic and stainless pistols as well as a Heckler & Koch firearm before proceeding to meet army personnel in a banquet.

The monarch was earlier greeted upon arrival at the helipad near the Officers' Mess by Deputy Minister of Defence, Pehin Datu Singamanteri Col (R) Dato Hj Mohd Yasmin; Commander of Royal Brunei Armed Forces, Pehin Datu Lailaraja Major General Dato Seri Hj Awg Halbi.

His Majesty later inspected a guard of honour mounted by 110 personnel from the Third Battalion before proceeding to hear a briefing on the Training Institute's organisational structure delivered by its Commander, Lt. Col Hj Said B. Hj Putih.

At the gymnasium, physical exercise instructors briefed His Majesty on the facilities.

The monarch also toured the fitness room, which houses several treadmills. The ruler showed his concern on the equipment, both old and new at the gym.

Also coming under close attention were Language and Science labs as well as School of Studies, which teaches language and map reading skills. Upon completing education at the School of Studies, recruits undergo full-time basic army training.

Next on the itinerary was a visit to Company Recruit, where currently 181 recruits are undergoing training, followed by a tour to Recruit Barrack before heading to the Officers' Mess for a banquet.

His Majesty also signed a parchment and received a souvenir from the Commander of the Training Institute. The working visit ended with a group photo session and exchange of greetings with the Training Institute personnel.

The monarch made a similar visit on May 15, 2000.

Yesterday's visit was another milestone and a historic moment for the institute that demonstrated the monarch's concern on army affairs, both in the training aspect as well as the welfare of the army community. The visit is also an inspiration to army personnel to be more committed in upholding RBAF's role. - Borneo Bulletin (17th May 2006)