BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN – His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah on Tuesday announced the establishment of a Jawi studies centre to promote the Malay-Arabic script that “represents the nation’s soul and identity”.

The sultan made the announcement during Seri Begawan Religious Teachers University College’s (KUPU SB) 9th convocation at the International Convention Centre.

In his titah, he said it is the responsibility of all higher education institutions to promote Jawi as having the same importance as the Malay language.

KUPU SB must not be the only institution that plays a role in upholding Jawi as part of Brunei’s cultural heritage, he added.

Addressing 259 graduates, the monarch also spoke about the need for Islamic history to be taught in schools and tertiary education institutions, alongside the history subject.

KUPU SB previously organised a seminar on the history of Islam to showcase the beauty of the religion in relation to the Malay Islamic Monarchy (MIB) national philosophy and Zikir Nation.

Citizens must think and act as pure Bruneians as part of their duty to religion and country, the sultan said.

He went on to say that teachers are the conduits of education, while education is important to national development.

Education is an investment and pursuing a career is another form of investment that is equally important, but the monarch said education should take precedence.

He said one can always explore the opportunities that come with the working life, but education cannot be delayed.

“Education is no doubt a lifelong investment, it knows no limits, it is not subjected to numbers and these numbers cannot be used to limit the amount of investment that goes into education.

”Thus, it is wrong to restrict education because of fear of no jobs or fear of an increase in unemployment,” he added.