By Azlan Othman
His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam yesterday consented to attend the opening ceremony of the first meeting of the third session of the State Legislative Council at the International Convention Centre in Berakas.
Also present were HRH Prince Haji Al-Muhtadee Billah, the Crown Prince and Senior Minister at the Prime Minister's Office and HRH Prince Mohamed Bolkiah, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
The ceremony began with the approval of the minutes of the previous session held in March last year. His Majesty, greeted by a royal salute on arrival, inspected the guard of honour before proceeding to the hall to deliver his titah.
The State Legislative Council's first meeting was held on October 10, 1962, after the country's first election on August 30 and 31, 1962. Part of the constitutional provisions on general elections were suspended in 1962 and members, from August 28, 1963 onwards, held seats by royal appointment.
The council held its first sitting on December 27, 1983 and was dissolved on February 13, 1984.
The Brunei Legislature was re-opened on September 25, 2004, after a 21-year absence, with its first agenda being the proposed amendment of the 1959 constitution. The council now houses 29 members after the government dissolved the previous sitting on September 2, 2005.
(7th March 2007)