By Za'im Zaini & Azrol Azmi
Brunei will celebrate Hari Raya Aidilfitri on Tuesday (tomorrow) after a month-long of fasting during the holy month of Ramadhan, with the announcement made by High Court Syariah Judge Pehin Dato Hj Awg Salim over RTB news and radio yesterday. The decision was based on attempts made to sight the new moon at strategic locations but which was not in view.
Officials yesterday made attempts to sight the new crescent moon or 'Hilal' at several vantage locations at Bukit Shahbandar in Jerudong, Bukit Agok Firing Range and Bukit Ambok in the Tutong District and Bukit Lumut in Belait District.
In Bukit Shahbandar, among the officials present were the Surveyor General Haji Mohd Jamil bin Haji Mohd Ali, Pehin Haji Hamidon, Pengiran Haji Tassim bin Pengiran Haji Hassan, the Syariah Judge and other officials from the Syariah Court, Ministry of Religious Affairs, State Mufti Office and Survey Department, Ministry of Development.
For Muslims, Hari Raya Aidilfitri is a joyful celebration of the achievement of enhanced piety. It is a day of forgiveness, moral victory and peace, of congregation, fellowship, brotherhood and unity. Muslims are not only celebrating the end of fasting, but thanking God for the help and strength that they believe He gave them throughout the previous month to help them practise self-abstinence.
The sunnat Aidilfitri prayers will be held on Friday at all mosques and suraus throughout the country commencing 7.30am.
Meanwhile, 12 shots of the cannon will be fired today at the Taman Haji Sir Muda Omar Ali Saifuddien by military police of the Royal Brunei Armed Forces Support Services to usher in the festive season in the Sultanate.
Commercial areas in the country will most definitely be swamped by last-minute shopping today. Supermarkets will be packed, as the air of excitement and festivity reached its zenith with many still bargain-hunting for Raya. Many from Brunei too headed for Limbang and Miri for quick shopping or a break.
As a norm, members of the public will be able to convey their Hari Raya greetings to His Majesty and the royal family at the Istana Nurul Iman which will be open for three days, from the second day of Hari Raya from 10am until noon and from 2pm to 4pm.
- Borneo Bulletin
(23th October 2006)