The Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports launches the 2018 International Day for Older Persons celebrations as Acting Director of Community Development Rostinah binti Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Sura Pahlawan Dato Paduka Haji Mohd Tahir looks on. – PHOTOS: JAMES KON
BY James Kon
MINISTER of Culture, Youth and Sports Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Awang Haji Aminuddin Ihsan bin Pehin Orang Kaya Saiful Mulok Dato Seri Paduka Haji Abidin, on Thursday announced an action plan to support senior citizens. He made this comment during the celebrations for the 2018 International Day for Older Persons at the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports (MCYS) building under the theme ‘Celebrating Older Human Rights Champions’.
The annual celebrations were highlighted by a senior citizens’ workshop organised by the Community Development Department (JAPEM), as a platform for stakeholders to play a major role in determining the welfare of the elderly.
“Statistics show that life expectancy in this country is set to increase, which means an increase in the number of senior citizens,” said the minister in his welcoming remarks.
“Therefore, to ensure the quality of life for senior citizens as our future responsibility, the focus of today’s workshop will be on the implementation of an action plan for issues faced by senior citizens, which has already been confirmed by the National Council on Social Issues,” the minister said.
“This action plan will give priority towards the involvement of senior citizens in community development and improving the quality of healthcare for senior citizens.”
Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Awang Haji Aminuddin Ihsan bin Pehin Orang Kaya Saiful Mulok Dato Seri Paduka Haji Abidin in a group photo with members of the Legislative Council and senior citizens
The minister added, “Our ministry has taken steps to make sure that the directions and strategic planning are in line with the National Action Plan on issues faced by senior citizens. It is particularly significant that this endeavour involves our strategic partners, including government agencies and NGOs, in making sure that the implementation is the result of a ‘Whole-of-Nation’ approach and all-inclusive.
“It is hoped that this action plan will apply to all parties, especially our most cherished senior citizens.”
The minister thanked their strategic partners, private companies, non-governmental organisations and members of the younger generation for helping to support several projects carried out by the senior citizens.
He said, “This is how we should respect senior citizens and their sacrifices, while taking a step forward in achieving the aspirations of Vision 2035 in boosting the quality of life of citizens and residents.”
Meanwhile, Acting Director at the JAPEM Rostinah binti Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Sura Pahlawan Dato Paduka Haji Mohd Tahir said, “The (workshop) discussions will focus on four main areas – religion, health, community and finance – which is in line with the objectives within the Madrid International Plan of Actions on Ageing 2002.”
A total of 120 senior citizens from all four districts took part in the workshop, which featured presentations on the topic of dementia by Deputy President of the Brunei Association for Dementia Irnawati binti Haji Mahir; and the Action Plan for Senior Citizens by Acting Deputy of the State Nation under JAPEM Atiqah binti Ibrahim.
The workshop’s resolution was presented by Dr Hajah Ra’yah binti Md Ali, in the presence of Permanent Secretary at the MCYS Datin Paduka Dr Hajah Norlila binti Dato Paduka Haji Abdul Jalil.
According to statistics compiled by JAPEM, the number of local senior citizens receiving old age pensions is set to increase. Brunei Darussalam will become an ageing nation by 2030, with thrice the number of senior citizens by 2050.
-- Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin