Sultan awards house keys
By Azrol Azmi

His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam yesterday consented to award more house keys to eligible recipients in Brunei-Muara District under the landless scheme for indigenous people for Kampong Mata-Mata (Katok 'B').

The benevolent ruler awarded keys to 179 recipients yesterday at the Civil Services Institute (IPA) in Rimba. Of that 98 received keys to type 'D' houses and 81 type 'E' houses.

The landless scheme for indigenous, or known as Skim Tanah Kurnia Rakyat Jati (STKRJ), was previously handled by the Land Department and was the responsibility of the Housing Development Department in handling the application process, house allocation and housing estate management, while the STKRJ housing projects were handled by the Development Department, Public Works Department.

Construction works at Katok 'B' are still underway and are not completed yet. Plans for Katok 'B' housing scheme involve a total of 1,284 lots allocated to build three types of houses including 40 units of type 'C' houses, 1,143 units of type 'D' houses and 101 units of type 'E' houses.

Currently, construction works are ongoing for 113 units of type 'D' houses and the project is expected to be completed by September 2007. Another 893 units of type 'D' houses will be build in the Katok 'B' area that are included in the 9th National Development Plan.

The ceremony was held at the Civil Services Institute where the monarch was greeted upon his arrival by Minister of Home Affairs Pehin Orang Kaya Johan Pahlawan Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Adanan and Minister of Development Pehin Orang Kaya Hamzah Pahlawan Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Abdullah, deputy ministers and other senior government officers.

The Brunei-Muara District Officer, Dato Paduka Hj Yussop Bakar, said the ceremony of awarding of keys to recipients is highly valued especially since it is held in the beginning of a new year. It also reflects the care and concern of His Majesty.

He also added that the ceremony was one of the eagerly awaited moments for the recipients and would be a talking point among them, residents of Mukim Gadong 'B' and close neighbours.

After the ceremony, His Majesty toured the Civil Services Institute, which is currently holding computer related courses.

His Majesty then visited some of the recipients' type 'D' and 'E' houses in Kampong Mata-Mata (Katok 'B).

His Majesty first visited the house of Awg Kamis bin Salleh who presented a 'Pesambah'. His Majesty then visited some of the neighbouring houses as the ruler was invited by the people to grace their new home.

His Majesty also visited the Business School in Gadong whose mission is to prepare students with the necessary skills to enhance the nation's manpower resources and also to provide them with the opportunity to appreciate lifelong education through innovative and quality business programmes consistent with the national aspiration.

The Business School offers BDTVEC Pre-National Diploma in Business & Finance, BDTVEC National Diploma in Business & Finance, BDTVEC Pre-National Diploma in Secretarial Studies and BDTVEC National Diploma in Secretarial Studies.

His Majesty then visited the NBT Lexus Showroom where the monarch was greeted by Mr Ninan Chacko, Managing Director of NBT, NBT Directors and management staff.

His Majesty took a closer look at one of the Lexus line of cars, the LS 460 model. NBT (Brunei) Sdn Bhd is one of the biggest car distributors in Brunei, representing the Toyota and Lexus marques.

The company began operations in 1957 and eventually was acquired by Inchape Berhad in 1967 to sell Toyota motor vehicles exclusively in Brunei Darussalam. It added the Lexus line in 1993, making NBT the franchise holder with the widest range of Toyota and Lexus vehicles in Southeast Asia.

His Majesty later visited the Syarikat Perniagaan & Perusahaan Fuel Station at Jalan Menglait, Gadong. His Majesty observed the establishment and profile of the fuel station and viewed the implementation and workflow of Fleetcard Management System, a joint project between Bank Islam Brunei Darussalam Berhad and Brunei Shell Marketing Company Sdn Bhd with support from the Ministry of Finance.

His Majesty then visited the residence of Ketua Kampong Menglait, Awang Haji Mohdar bin Awang Haji Ahmad in Kg Pengkalan Gadong, Jalan Menglait before proceeding to The Empire Hotel and Country Club for a luncheon. (10th January 2007)