The debate on Brunei’s brain drain has again hit a feverish pitch since Hardware Zone published a post entitled “Very severe brain drain as Brunei falls into decline, talented Bruneians leaving the country“. Citizens like myself are only too indifferent to the negativity surrounding the subject but it kind of begs the question: Why do many of the talented and skilled Bruneians leave the country?
So I made a social experiment in facebook asking the local audience between choosing to renounce their Bruniean citizenship for an American one with $10,000 ‘start-up’ living capital or maintaining their citizenship status as it is under the Sharia objectives that the country’s heading toward. What I’ve got was a fairly decent and balanced reply. Most would maintain their citizenship on the basis of familial ties, comfort, and security. Another argued that there’s beauty in Shria law, to that of Islam it is a perfect law given to humanity by Providence.
And……….some equated my monetary statement as heartless. Like you can’t replace your family with that $10,000 or along the lines of “you are a traitor for even thinking that!”. Anyhow, this is expected.
The point of the question is to gauge and challenge the basic beliefs of locals that renouncing one’s citizenship is not bad at all. Instead of looking that process in a negative light, or to call it the pathway for ‘traitors’, we should treat it as a key to our survival and growth. Because we are living in a modernized world everyone is going ‘international’ and we should not ignore the fact that those who work abroad will attain the right position and skill sets to bring about real change. The fundamental idea of going international was cemented by Aussia Billionaire Lindsay Fox after he advised Bruneians to leave the country for five years to learn the ‘ropes of the new trade’ before coming back and building it up for the better. Though five years might be extended into decades, will the locals come back to help once oil and gas is gone? You bet most of them would.
The second point is to respect others decision in achieving a better living standard elsewhere. If the local institutions cannot accommodate their needs then it is up to them to renounce their citizenship – this is a globalization world after all. No one is ever morally indebted to anyone, let alone the government. Do realize that how much money has been ‘lost’ over those doctors, it is up to their choice to lead their lives for the better(so long as they pay their debts!). Preaching for nationalism and philosophy is over for these citizens. As a Abraham Maslow put it: Humans main motivation is in self-actualization. Without the framework for personal growth then other countries will snatch and utilized their skills in reward for greater pay. promotion and lifestyle. This decision should be respected.
Thirdly, there’s little study made over the motivation to renounce their citizenship. Without adequate knowledge and understanding, the calls for them to come back is only hot air for them. It is thus quite right to speculate that Brunei does not offer better opportunity for self-growth, the right political framework to give representation for the middle class, the right markets to scale their business or provide the right educational facilities for their children.
As for the last bit, I was brought about to study religion on the afternoon school but only to be discriminated against by other students simply because I looked White and Chinese. The same goes to my little brothers now. If it happened to us, imagine how non-muslim children will fare with this? (Religious school was made compulsory to all students) With modernization shall come tolerance, reason, and logic in managing public affairs but the religious sect is simply too strong in this country.
“As honourable the intention is” as argued in my statement on Sharia law “I can’t stop to think that inner rasputins could one day misuse this form of law for their own benefit at the expense of society. Government’s aim is to govern and ultimately serve its people, not let few close minded and ignorant officials dictate what they think is best and discriminate minorities in the process. And without transparency, these people can turn the whole society backward.” We need a political framework where competition and honesty are valued, not fear. For the former would enhance public services, the latter cronyism, discrimination, and ignorance.
Why is the writer writing this article? Well, to share an oft-forgotten insight that ex-citizens are not traitors, back-stabbers or ingrates. To have this mindset is to let rule the mind of decision makers not to let our people meet global challenges, and letting them to be confined with the existing conditions and comfort zones.
This inevitably goes to my next point: Future Scholarship students SHOULD NOT bore the brunt for those seniors who did not return back home. I don’t accept the MMI interview process. I don’t accept the point on how it will qualify who will be “loyal” or “best fit to serve” the country. What this does is to reduce the number of Bruneian scholars. And I find is repulsive to see given the need for development. On the contrary, we should do best in utilizing those oil and gas to send more and more each year. Yes, there may be problems once in awhile but it does not help reducing and squeezing the potential simply because of citizenship renunciation.
If the writer is given authority, he’d devise a policy whereby scholarship students who opted to staying and working outside the country to be given a 10 year payback period on the scholarship-turned-loan. It will not be that hard for them to pay it back considering the bigger opportunity they will gain through working abroad i.e. greater salary, benefits.
Why should decision makers tolerate Brain Drain now? Thus the whole article is dedicated on answering this question.
To conclude, I believe that the negative mindset towards Bruneians leaving the country and renouncing their citizenship for the better should change, that they are reasonable and logical adults who will not be impressed by tradition, nationalism, or existing philosophy other than meeting their need for self-actualization. Locals and especially decision makers should learn to understand the motive. If they realize the ‘whys’ and ‘hows’ they’d too may do the same too – as I hope you do too. Furthermore, I find it repulsive to see the damaging trend that is being done to the upcoming scholars. This should change. I believe that by internationalizing Bruneians is the best step towards achieving long-term progress and survival. The sooner we realize this, the sooner we can build Brunei effectively.
Being Bruneian, afterall, is more than just paperwork.
Harvey Mckay once stated in his book “Swimming with the Sharks” that some of the greatest businessmen are politicians. Partly because they take into account onto the small matters like doing a request for the people and answering questions etc. That he said can make a huge difference in getting in the votes in the long run. I did not managed to translate his theory into reality. But after I got a tweeter reply by Dato’ Sri Haji Mohammad Najib bin Tun Haji Abdul Razak, the prime minister of Malaysia himself, I finally understood what he meant.
Mohammad Najib Tun Razak’s personal reply on my tweets made a very powerful impression on me. He from my opinion is in fact a true leader fit to run a multi-cultural nation like Malaysia. Especially in this Globalized economy. I do not know what others think but from the newspapers I read and the backgrounds he posses, I simply know that he is a man of confidence. This idea and opinion was further supplemented when I saw his suggestions in his youtube videos as I will explain in the preceding paragraph.
It was before the tweet incident happened that I took on a study on him via Youtube on his personal channel under the title “NajibRazak”. Because there is a prevailing biaseness on him in the political landscape right now I certainly can attest that they are in fact nothing more than bias videos. However when I go into his channel and saw his videos then everything came into light. The clusters of videos included segments where he would answer the personal questions posed to him via social networking. From the subject of national patriotism to district developments, from book recommendations to multi-million Ringgit youth fund projects, from Batman to Kueh Tiaw, he took the time to reply his Rakyat.
Then I thought I might ask him too. Why not? So I asked him about the economic bi-lateral ties between Malaysia and Brunei. A few moments afterwards here is what I got in my personal inbox “Thank you for your kind remarks. We have very good relations with Brunei. We will work towards deepening our ties even further.” I was impressed by his reply. Here is a man in his position who invariably took the time to reply a tweet from a Bruneian. Truly it made an impression on me.
I now feel like I want to meet him one day and discuss about our national economic relations. With hopes that the readers can join the discussion too in developing His Majesty’s vision of 2035 while we can help develop Tun Datuk Najib Razak’s vision of 1Malaysia. As Victor Hugo wrote in his diary, the night before he passed away, the immortal truth continues as follows that Nothing is as powerful as an idea whose time has come.
It was a night to remember for the over 10,000 people particularly for the Bruneian youth for the Brunei HSBC 2012 Walk, Run, Cycle at the SOAS field in the capital city. Students from PTEK, Maktab Sains and many more could recall the amazing event the night before.
Pauline from PTEK commented about the lively event. “It was great, the fact that it was in the night made it a little easier for everyone. didn’t hear anyone complaining at all. It was also so good as it helped Bruneians interact with one another, meeting new people and all.(What’s more) Children participated too!”. “Well overall it was great :p HAHAHAH” she tweeted The AMO Times.
Farizah Abdullah from Sekolah Menengah PAP Haji Masnah remarked “HSBC 6KM run yesterday night was fun!”
Meanwhile Hazirah Mazim from Maktab Sains recall her excitement in the event amid only joining the 6kn run. ”Even though i only joined 6km run, i did have a great time running. It’s good to see many people participating in the event. Great job HSBC for organising such an event!”
Not forgetting one of the most eye catching props ever was the Lego Avengers group as you see above in the picture. In an informal interview The AMO Times asked them of the event and they replied with great enthusiasm of it and the utmost appreciation for the HSBC team : “It was an absolutely epic night not only for us ‘LEGO’ Avengers but as well as the remaining 10K participants. Thumbs up *LEGO Style to HSBC for making this event successful!”
A student from ITB, Michell Yap Hui Ying replied “it was fun!! like what the hsbc workers said “its a huge event” first time banar i see lots of people. about 10 thousand. most of the people join 6km. 11.5km is challenging but then also ramai wa. for me, this is a chance for me to prove to myself that i can do it. i mean like well, i never really enjoy running. my friends rarely see me run around~~ i join this to see whether can i reach the finish line without giving up, resting or taking shortcuts. but ya, i join the 6km. i didnt run tho~~ i just keep on walking and walking and yes, i finish it!! it is a big step for me and im proud of myself ^^ plus, its for charity. Everyone enjoys doing charity and yest, make ourself healthy at the same time. Its like shooting 2 birds with one stone!!.”
Will Smith was in Ukraine to promote the third installment of his action thriller, “Men In Black III,” when a reporter approached him on the red carpet and started hugging him. But the reporter got a tad bit too frisky and Will, like a true brotha, back-smacked him for getting all up in his grill.
What did the hand say to the face? SMACK!
There are many times when we all want to execute great achievements only to find most of them later unfinished and forgotten. Afterwards the article would give you the 5 methods on how to increase your productivity.
Whether you are a student in PTEK, a teacher in UBD or a CEO in HSBC, all these points would invaribly help you out to get the most of everything that has been set to you. Thus making you feel more happier, stree-free and more productive in your life.
I believe this should be read among the Bruneians youths. Because we are the ones who are always constantly demanding the government to do more to build up the nation are we not?
Few days ago I saw a picture of a dude from Google giving a workshop to the students explaining that one should can aim to be 5% different than the rest of the population and that could make a hell lot of a difference.
That is how Google got to its position in the 1st place. By thinking differently form the rest. That is how Brunei should all be and these 5 points mentioned would give you that jolt to keep you alive and kicking in this globalized world.
Without further ado below are the 5 steps towards increasing your productivity.
1. Never Leave Things Behind
Here is chinese saying that got pounded into my head whilst I was working part time in a local oriental restaurant here. I got countless feedbacks from my boss to always never leave anything behind even the small things which I occassionally did. “The punches you miss is the one which wears you out the most” a quote said. And leaving all the small things can make you lose your energy thus making you less productive. So better to not leave things behind. After I followed his advise, soon enough everything set sail according to plan.
2. Write Down goals in Your head
“Our brain is not programmed to remember” said David Allen the international best selling author of Getting Things Done. “Rather you should write down what you think in a piece of paper”. It was suggested from my Tweeter friend Izrmy. After I done this my productivity bloomed towards unimaginable heights. All the things in your head would go away but not if its written down in something. So get your pen ready and write all your goals out before its too late!
3. Create Projects
If the goals you have written down are many in more than one idea then I suggest you should make projects out of it. Make it Project A and Project B out of it and in a seperate piece of paper you write down the lists of goals you should be achieveing. Why? Because if you try to mix Biology with Mathematics in your planning than you better not plan it at all. You would only end up in the computer checking out your latest tweets as a route for escapism from the confusion you bring yourself into.
4. Finish What You Start
When you look and study the most richest people in the planet you would find that they are men of intergrity and honesty. Which means that if they promise something to get done they would finish it as creatively and presistently possible. Where would Genting Highlands be if Goh Tong gave up halfway through the resorts completion. So when you have an idea push it through with indomitabble wit and will. Concur that you are going to achieve it no matter what. Even the small things. Remember Providence have its strange ways in testing you. If you cannot finish your homeworks then how could you possible get 4 A Stars someday?
5. Make Haste
Life is too short. Better to run then to crawl. Make decisions fast and steady and when you do make sure you implement your decisions. Or else it would only be good intentions that will be the pavements set towards hell. There are a lot of talented Bruneians inside the government body now but they are just mere mileccianous if they cannot implement decisions to change the policy and settings as fast as possible. The glorious year of 2035 awaits. A world class economy will be on the rise so let us make haste in being the best we can in creating the best we all should.
These 5 steps can increase your productivity: To never leave things behind, to write down goals in your head, to create projects out of them if its too much, to always finish what one starts and to make haste all in all in acheiving our national goal of 2035.
Brunei students in UK and Ireland are all set to vote for their new Brunei Student Union board today. Once elected the boards duty will include in fostering relations among the other Brunei society in UK and in Ireland as well as representing them effectively in facing the issues that conjures up.
The main reason why this vote is important to students is that if the right people are elected then their respective society can benefit greatly. Such that they can get media backing, the financial support and the necessary help in getting through the bureaucracy in managing events. Most importantly is that their society gets a voice in the representative board which may otherwise be ignored if students do not chose wisely.
The vote is important as it is linked to every Brunei students here. The voters are held as the main priority in this session and the elected officials should listen and do their rightful duty so as to meet the demand of the people. How? By asking the nominators what they should do and what they should be really representing before giving them the vote.
In searching for the better candidate, Students are advised to base their votes on the person’s leadership, competence, past contributions and relevance.
Thus in this case the writer would inject what he promises if he is elected part of the board. Below is a transparent excerpt of what the writer will do if elected as President. http://bit.ly/KlXzAC and as Financial Secretary http://bit.ly/IRtK8g. The writer would recommend Nabil Abdullah to be the Information Secretary because he is competent in Media and has given much of his contribution to the society.
Equally readers may read testimonials written by the nominators. Positions that our Brunei UK Students are aiming are as General Secretary, Information Secretary, Sports Secretary and their respective assistants. Undergraduate and A-Level Social and Welfare officer are also there. More information at http://bit.ly/JybVfK
Vote now for your favourite candidate by completing this form by clicking Here. Have your rightful voice be today. Voting session ends at Friday Midnight at 18/05/2012 and are only open to Brunei UK and Eire Students.
More news about Brunei UK and Eire Student by clicking this Link
A Hampshire man who was seriously injured in Borneo is to be flown home after the Sultan of Brunei offered to pay for his transport, his family said.
Terry Dukes, a professional diver, has undergone five operations after being found with a serious head injury, but remains in a critical condition.
His family has been unable to pay for his repatriation flight.
But his cousin said she wrote to the sultan and he agreed to cover the transport bill.
Mr Dukes has lived in Borneo for more than 20 years and worked as a diver and marine biologist mapping uncharted shipwrecks.
He was found by his girlfriend collapsed in the road with a head injury in January.
His cousin Carole Jahme said despite undergoing numerous operations at the Ripas Hospital, Brunei, he was still partially paralysed and needed to be brought back to the UK.
She said: “If you ask him to blink he can blink, if you ask him to squeeze your hand he can squeeze your hand, but he is seriously ill.”
Part of Mr Dukes’ skull was removed during the operations.
Ms Jahme, a Guardian journalist, said she had met three of the sultan’s children at a birthday party for the comedian Simon Amstell and so was able to contact him and ask for his help.
After a number of phone calls with the sultan himself he agreed to pay for AirMed to fly Mr Dukes back to Southampton.
An AirMed spokesman confirmed that Mr Dukes was due to arrive back in the UK on Sunday at Southampton Airport.
He will be taken to the neurology department at Southampton General Hospital.
Adapted from BBC.co.uk
Information referral by Hanif Jh
In an interview with SABC news Caroline Swanepoel said Nayati Shamelin Moodliar, who was kidnapped on his way to school, was safely back home.
“My sister said she will talk to us this afternoon, but she was off to the hospital with him just to have routine a check up,” Swanepoel said.
“It’s been the best news ever that Nayati is back… he came home hungry and tired.”
The boy is in Malaysia on a Dutch passport, but has South African family.
Malaysian police said on Thursday he was found after being kidnapped six days ago near his house in the Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur.
Kuala Lumpur city police chief Mohmad Salleh said Nayati was returned unharmed. The Moodliar family confirmed the child’s safe recovery.
“We are delighted to tell you that Nayati is back home with us and, although it has obviously been a very traumatic time for him, he appears at this stage to be in good shape,” the Moodliar family said on a Facebook account set up to help find the boy.
“We cannot begin to say how proud we are of him and the way that he has coped with the events of the past week,” they added.
Moodliar was seized on Friday while walking to Mont Kiara International School by two men who dragged him to a waiting black car, police said.
Written by Fred Petrossian
Headlines about multi-million dollar corruption often dance across the front pages of Iranian newspapers. There is currently hot news about Iran’s biggest bank fraud, allegedly by people with ties to the government.
But all of a sudden a piece of positive news shined in Iran and outside country: A street sweeper named Ahmad Rabani from Bojnourd, 700km from Tehran, found 1 billion Toman (about $570,000 US dollars) and returned it to the owner.
As thanks, he received a 200,000 Toman ($120 US dollars) reward.
Iranian blogger Unirani praises the street sweeper and calls his actions a lesson for Islamic Republic officials involved with corruption. The blogger writes [fa]:
… a man from the working class and a member of the municipality found 1 billion Toman in a bag and returned it to its owner. We realise the worthiness of his actions when we learn he lived in poverty because of dire economic situation in country. Naturally he could have kept the money, resigned from his job, and become one of these millionaires. But he did not do it. Let that be a lesson to those thieves and corrupt people who steal everything in the country and with their impure policies that create endless economic difficulties.
Another blogger, Pesarirouni writes about this story and says [fa]:
Dignity still exists… in a time when a brother has no mercy for a brother… I was born in a working class family and I can sympathise with all the difficulties these people face… I praise his dignity, and think he should get a medal of honor for his actions.
Del2del writes [fa] that Rabani must have overcome big temptations to return the money, since he estimates the amount of money would equal 166 years of a street sweeper’s salary.
This post was originally published by Global Voices.