Anniversary of the Royal Brunei Malay Regimen Date: May 31
Anniversary of the Royal Brunei Malay Regiment is a public holiday in Brunei.
Brunei is an oil-rich tropical country that is located on the northern coast of Borneo in Southeast Asia. It is a very rich sultanate for its small size and small population. The Muslim country has a number of festivals, public holidays, and national holidays such as New Years. However, one of its most important public holidays is the Anniversary of the Royal Brunei Malay Regiment, celebrated every year by the country on May 31 to commemorate the day the Brunei armed forces were first formed.
History of the Anniversary of the Royal Brunei Malay Regimen in Brunei
The armed forces of Brunei were first formed on May 31, 1961 by the former Sultan Omar Ali. Initially named Askar Melayu Brunei or Brunei Malay in the local language, it was renamed to include the word diraja (royal) by the sultan during its fourth anniversary celebrations. It was again renamed the Royal Brunei Armed Forces on January 1, 1984 after the country attained independence from Britain. Although political parties were allowed to operate in the country for a short while during the 1980s and the 1990s, they were later suppressed, and the Sultan continues to be both head of state as well as head of the army.
Since the army was initially formed, consisting of only 60 members, it has grown dynamically. It has a land force, naval force, and an air force that not only helps to protect the country from terrorists and insurgents but also helps during national disasters and calamities. Because of its history, only citizens with Malay ethnicity can join the army. However, there are no drafts to join the army, and people are free to join it if they want. The Singapore armed forces along with those of Brunei now conduct several joint exercises. Regular training sessions are held by both armies in both countries.
Brunei’s Anniversary of the Royal Brunei Malay Regiment Traditions, Customs and Activities
The Anniversary of the Royal Brunei Malay Regiment is a public holiday, and most shops, museums, hotels, etc. remain closed on the day. To commemorate this day, parades are held by the various divisions belonging to the Royal Brunei Malay Regiment in different camps throughout the country every year. All of the members of the armed forces participate in the parade. Usually several important people like the sultan, minister of defense, and other figureheads participate in the celebrations. The sultan then inspects the guard of honor which is sometimes followed by the air force’s display of its aircrafts.