Japanese Film Festival 2018

Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in culture, movies, Social News


His Excellency, Mr. Motohiko Kato, Ambassador of Japan to Brunei Darussalam (3rd from left) and Mr. Masafumi, Senior Project Manager, Film and Broadcast Media of Japan Foundation (2nd from left) and Yang Berhormat Pehin Orang Kaya Putera Maharaja Dato Paduka Haji Abdul Ghani binPehin Datu Pekerma Dewa Dato Paduka Haji Abdul Rahim, a Legislative council member (4th from left) during the official launch of the Japanese Film Festival 2018

His Excellency, Mr. Motohiko Kato, Ambassador of Japan to Brunei Darussalam giving his welcoming remarks to the audience

The Japanese Film Festival 2018 kicked off in Brunei Darussalam last night at The Arena Cineplex, Kiulap. Attending the opening ceremony were His Excellency, Mr. Motohiko Kato, Ambassador of Japan to Brunei Darussalam and Mr. Masafumi, Senior Project Manager, Film and Broadcast Media of Japan Foundation, other members of the Diplomatic Missions in Brunei, media influencers, clubs and associations related to Japan.

The Japanese Film Festival is organised by the Japan Foundation and Embassy of Japan to Brunei Darussalam. This is a platform used to raise interest in Japanese films among audiences in the ASEAN region. It aims to provide opportunities for people to gather offline and online, under the vision of building a system for an extensive bridge between the Asia-Pacific film market and the Japanese film industry as mentioned by Mr. Masafumi.

There will be seven films being screened daily until the 28th of February 2018. The genres include drama, animation, manga adaptation and mystery. Do refer to the posters for details and you can google them for more in-depth review.

The cool thing about Japanese Film Festival 2018 is that the ticket admission is FREE and the way to claim your ticket is to collect your tickets from 5pm onwards at Arena Cineplex at Seri Q-Lap Mall. Each of the screening begins at 7:30pm.

For more information, you can contact them at 863 6488 or visit their Facebook Page or instagram @jffbrunei

What Rano thinks: I’m so pleased that there’s finally a Japanese Film Festival, showcasing more than 5 Japanese films. I’m a movie junkie and furthermore, I love Japanese movie for some reason. There are a few titles that I love rematching such as Zatoichi, Your Name (animation) and Battle Royale to name a few.

Good job to the Japan Foundation and the Embassy of Japan to Brunei Darussalam of making this possible because I normally see this kind of events in Singapore when I traveled. So this is a good start in creating more interest in Japanese films. I’m hoping to catch another one tonight if I can get hold of the tickets 🙂


His Excellency speaking to the management of Times Square Shopping Centre

Hello Ms. Junko Kurihara 😀

We caught the first film, Chihayafuru Part I


A’aqiil of Filterworks Production was also present

The screen times for the selected movies at Arena Cineplex

The Audi Q5 and the Audi A4 S line Black Styling

Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in audi, automative, Social News


Check out the new Audi Q5


The new Audi Q5 boast many improvements- a stronger Q design identity, better driving experience with new quattro technology coupled with a new 7-speed dual clutch gearbox and maximum everyday usability. A quieter car thanks to improved aero-acoustics and best in-class drag co efficiency (0.30). Standard for Brunei will be 19” wheels.

The test drive was pretty successful and many of them praised the handling and the features available on the Audi Q5. They even compared it with other brands and impressed with the quality and it’s also price competitively in the market. Have you actually test driven the Audi Q5? Do visit their showroom at Kiarong and give the Q5 a run. You’ll be impressed.





New Audi A4 S line Black Styling

TCY Motors Sdn Bhd has introduced a new variant from its Audi A4 sedan line.

The Audi A4 S line Black Styling features the Audi A4 2.0 TFSI Ultra (190hp/320Nm) with all it’s exterior highlights in gloss black in place of the standard aluminium/chrome. this includes the S line rear diffuser, tailgate spoiler and side skirts. An exclusive 18″ 10-Y spoke in matching black gloss wheels rounds off the entire package.

Also new on this variant are built-in rear passenger window blinds which were previously not available. The S line Black Styling will also be available soon for the more powerful A4 with quattro AWD. For an up close viewing the public can visit Audi Kiarong during opening hours.



The Audi A4 S line Black Styling


Now whenever you drop off your Audi at our Service Centre, we’ll chauffeur you in an Audi to your desired destination!* For inquiries and booking please call 2395101/102 during operating hours. *within Brunei only

Pan Bright January Winner

Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in travel, Social News



Pan Bright Travel Service today held a prize presentation ceremony for the January winner of its “Travel & Win a Hyundai or Birkin promotion” campaign at their office in Bandar Seri Begawan.

Sales & Marketing Manager of Royal Brunei Airlines, Awang Hj. Mohd Shamiruddin Bin Hj Sharbini presented the prize to the representative of the lucky winner Awang Mohammad Azujrin Bin Haji Zahini who won himself a return economy class ticket to any short haul destination sponsored by Royal Brunei Airlines.

This is the fifth monthly prize for Pan Bright’s “Travel & Win a Hyundai or Birkin promotion” campaign, launched on the 26 August 2017 and ends on the 31 March 2018.

For the period beginning September 2017 to February 2018, one monthly ticket will be given out where the lucky customer will stand a chance to win one return ticket to any short haul destination of their choice on Royal Brunei Airlines or a return ticket to Singapore on Singapore Airlines.

The Grand Prize of this promotion will be a Hyundai Accent Car or a Hermès Birkin Bag, sponsored by Pan Bright Travel Service. Other prizes for the Grand Draw will include 2 return air tickets to any long haul destination of their choice sponsored by Royal Brunei Airlines, a return ticket to Brisbane sponsored by Singapore Airlines and return tickets to Kuala Lumpur for two person sponsored by Malaysia Airlines. Selection of winners will be held in April 2018.

For more enquiries regarding the promotion, please contact Pan Bright Travel’s offices at 2240980 for Bandar Seri Begawan, 3341154 for Kuala Belait or 3220078 for Seria or follow our Facebook @panbright or Instagram @panbrighttravel for the latest updates.

Generasi Berakih, Leaders Foundation Camp 2.0

Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in community, charity, lifestyle, Social News


A total of 40 participants registered to participate in LEADERS FOUNDATION CAMP 2.0 (LFC) organized by GENERASI BEKARIH last weekend Pusat Pembangunan Belia, Tanah Jambu

A total of 40 participants registered to participate in LEADERS FOUNDATION CAMP 2.0 (LFC) organized by GENERASI BEKARIH which ranges from 18 to 26 years old held at Pusat Pembangunan Belia, Tanah Jambu. The camp starts from 16th February to 18th February 2018 for 3 days 2 nights.

Last weekend marked another history of Generasi Bekarih second camp. This was an alternative ways to solve nations youth problems in unemployment. This camp will help to prepare them develop the way their mind sets as a leaders, to prepare to guide them towards the future. Other than that, the camp was another way to educate the youth in “Command Skills” or “Life Skills” to change their perspectives.

The participants of this camp consisted of youth, mostly represented from IPTs, IBTEs post graduate university students, members of Belia Masjid and youth association members who aimed to have a clearer vision or have intentions to change their way of life.

On the first day of the camp, participants were checking in and a short briefing regarding the activities was conducted on what to expect for the 3-day camp. The participants learnt and underwent physical and mental activities including ice breaker, understanding your potential, team building, value of life and more. Besides that, the camp aimed to educate the participants on the basics of leadership and to help change their ways of thinking. As we all know, rather than to enjoy their time during a long wekeend, they made it joyful at the same time their learning towards the camp.

The organizers are pleased to inform that Camp for LFC 3.0 will be commence on the 16th – 18th March on the first school holidays next month and the registrations is already been going since mid-January. For more updates, you can check us out at www.GenerasiBekarih.com or follow their Instagram @GenerasiBekarih and Facebook at Generasi Bekarih.








Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in lifestyle, Social News


Jason Koo and Supatra Lee with the bridesmaid #jaskawinsupa

They both have been dating since 2015 and they met at toastmasters.

The toast but not toastmasters related

The emcee for the wedding – Allen Ang and Rozana Yunos with great chemistry on stage

It was good to see you, Sharon, once again who really wants to catch Bodyman. Soon, soon 😀


The official wedding cake. But I never got the chance to eat it.

Toastmasters friends and also Supatra’s friends from Thailand and overseas.

What they have in common? Toastmasters 😀

The awesome bunch

The band from toasties


Half are still single and available

The ever beautiful Sandy Tan 😀

Nice decorations on stage

The view from the top

Congratulations, Jason and Supatra. Thanks for inviting me as one of the Heng Tais 😀

Ericsson Brunei celebrates the big 10

Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in technology, gadget, lifestyle, Social News


To celebrate its 10-year anniversary in Brunei, Ericsson invited guests to their Technology Tour, showcasing the company’s 5G and IoT capabilities, smart metering solutions and Technology for Good projects among other new, innovative offerings. The showcase reinforces Ericsson’s position as a market leader at the forefront of communications technology in the country. Martin Wiktorin , County Head of Ericsson Singapore, Brunei, the Philippines and Pacific Islands , 5th from right, and His Excellency Ambassador Hakan Jevrell, Ambassador of Sweden to Singapore and Brunei, 6th from right.


Last week marked Ericsson’s 10-year anniversary in Brunei. To celebrate the milestone, Ericsson invited its country stakeholders to view and experience the latest innovations and technologies during a technology demonstration attended by the Ambassador of Sweden to Singapore and Brunei, His Excellency Hakan Jevrell, and the Honorary Consul of the Embassy of the Netherlands to Brunei, Mr. Maarten Bomers, together with the local operators, telecommunications regulator, government agencies, local SMEs and local education institutes.

The showcase enabled event attendees to experience first-hand how Ericsson is evolving its business portfolio to provide smart solutions to real-world opportunities. “As we celebrate our 10th anniversary, I would like to emphasize our commitment to Brunei and its people through our technology innovations – particularly in 5G, IoT and Cloud,” said Martin Wiktorin , President and Country Manager of Ericsson Singapore and Brunei. “By constantly transforming our business portfolio and providing new, innovative solutions, we are enabling the communications industry and other sectors to do better business, increase efficiency, improve user experience and capture new opportunities.

The following Ericsson offerings were highlighted as part of the demonstrations:


At Ericsson, they strive to create a wireless environment where indoor and outdoor networks perform seamlessly together at all times. Integrated small cells in 5G networks deliver high per-user capacity and rate coverage everywhere, helping to meet the high requirements of network subscribers and tackle the challenges of urbanizing environments. With the potential to improve performance in the macro network by offloading traffic generated in hotspots, the demonstration introduced the industry’s first 5G NR-capable radio (Ericsson AIR products), which are able to support our 5G plug-ins for both Massive MIMO and Multi-User MIMO.

The Ericsson smart metering solution provides a platform for capturing information, monitoring consumption and presenting data from each meter at individual premises. The smart meter solution could be the first step towards IoT in Brunei The IoT application enables a 2-way communication between the smart meters and a centralized system over a wireless data network, enabling near real-time meter reading, charting of household consumption trends, online top-ups/reload and automatic credit control, among other things.

To transform everyday reality as we move into an even more networked society, computer aided technology that uses virtual reality headsets or multi-projected environments betters the consumer experience. In combination with physical environments or props that generate realistic images, sounds and other sensations simulate a user’s physical presence in a virtual or imaginary environment.


Vanessa Teo, founder & CEO of Agrome IQ was invited by Ericsson Brunei to showcase her agriculture technology solutions platform that support modern farmers in making effective decision-making processes to achieve a productive and profitable farm system.

 Ericsson’s Director for Brunei Gabriel Hii (center) with Martin Wiktorin , President and Country Manager of Ericsson Singapore and Brunei and Nitin Bansal, Ericsson’s head of network solutions for Southeast Asia, Oceania & India during the 10th anniversary of Ericsson Brunei at The Empire Hotel & Country Club

Rano’s thoughts: It’s good to see the idea of 5G being talked of. This will eventually be a good start for Brunei where smartphones are the highest penetration in the region, meaning that we are quite tech savvy to begin with and have access to technology.

However, that doesn’t necessarily translate to being ready or being in the right market for such technology. I do agree with what Gabriel mentioned that newer technologies such as the implementation of 5G systems (not just referring to mobile network) doesn’t guarantee its feasibility in the country if there is no demand or the lack of it.

For me, a good example is Augmented Reality. It’s good and all but we are not so much into it after a few tries. It’s just wow to our eyes but it’s not a must feature hence the demand for such is still not that great. The same can said to some aspect of 5G and the Internet of Things once it becomes available in Brunei.

I know that South Korea are testing their 5G capabilities for the Pyeonchang Games 2018 right now especially for the user experience where they can view their favourite athletes in real time and from a first person perspective. Now that’s what 5G is capable of. These are the things I would be very keen of.

For now, it’s more of creating a buzz for us to prep in the year end of 2019 where 5G handsets will be slowly introduced.

Thank you, Ericsson for the enlightenment of the 5G upcoming development. It will be nice to see if our local telco providers will engage with your services apart from DST.

Congratulations SMSA

Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in Youth, education, Sports


Jewel Shim Huei Zi, Jemimah Wen-Xi Liew and Syahla Salsabilia of SMSA (KB) receiving the trophy from Nadia Lee Siew Hoon binti Abdullah, Deputy Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Education and accompanied by Richard Lindsay, the British High Commissioner to Brunei Darussalam during the Great Debate Final held at Dewan Raya, RTB last week

Jemimah receiving her Best Speaker trophy

I miss debating. Reminds me of my high school days. For the past few years, I have been witnessing debating competition among schools and this is a great platform for students as they will be equipped with current affairs and can be beneficial to their studies.

Last week, Sayyidina Ali Secondary School (SMSA) were crowned the champions of the Great Debate Competition 2018 organised by the British High Commission and Department of Co-Curriculum Education at the Ministry of Education with the support of CfBT. They beat PTES (Bengkurong Sixth Form Centre) in the finals. We used to hear of Maktab Sains (MS) and Maktab Duli (MD) of making to the finals but this year, it’s a different story.

SMSA won their last debate competition back in 2010/2011. So it was great to see them back in winning ways.

The guest of honour during the finals at Dewan Raya, RTB was Nadia Lee Siew Hoon binti Abdullah, Deputy Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Education. Also present was Richard Lindsay, the British High Commissioner to Brunei Darussalam.

Richard was full of praise for the students on their efforts and these are essential skills especially for the young students. This will also help them in the future for Brunei vision 2035 as the topic touches on Commonwealth issues where Brunei is part of it.

Stuart Lee, the chief adjudicator, praised the deliveries of the debaters and saw brighter futures for them. He advised for the finalists to also focus on more solid examples to justify their points.

The Great Debate Competition, supported by CfBT Education Services, is the first of its kind to be held in Brunei, a new milestone in the partnership between the Department of Co-Curriculum Education at the Ministry of Education (MoE) and the British High Commission in Brunei Darussalam.

The competition carries the theme ‘The Commonwealth: Towards a Common Future’, reflecting the theme of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting which His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam is expected to attend this April in the United Kingdom.



Richard Lindsay speaking to the debaters from PTES after the prize ceremony

Stuart Lee the chief adjudicator giving his remarks of the debate

Geraldine Ting, Ak Muhd Rulzaimi bin Pg Hj Ramlee and Jessilyn Teh Jing Ying representing PTES

Hello MD students who came to support the finals too

The winners with their mentors and coaches from SMSA

It was no surprise that ‘Overall Best Speaker’ of the Great Debate Competition went to Jemimah Wen-Xi Liew of SMSA and she shared that her team had less knowledge on Commonwealth and competition was a great platform for them to expand their knowledge. The SMSA team was grateful towards their coaches and teachers who guided them in terms of research and delivery.

The competition officially began on February 5 with preliminary rounds being held in several sessions at PTES. Among the other participating schools were Hassanal Bolkiah Arabic Boys Secondary School (SMALHB), Paduka Seri Begawan Sultan Science College (Maktab Sains), and Duli Pengiran Muda Al-Muhtadee Billah College (Maktab Duli).

The Great Debate Competition additionally represented a chance to celebrate the UK and Brunei’s close educational ties to produce a future generation of dynamic leaders.

The competition is part of the Asean Great Education Campaign’s programme activities, organised by the British High Commission.

It aims to support the MoE’s push to cultivate an innovative and creative culture of learning; to empower, educate and provide a platform to help students be open-minded and develop communication and critical thinking skills that can be useful in university life and future careers; as well as provide recognition to participating students who exhibit excellence in their research and communication skills.


Bodyman screening extended till 15th February

Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in movies, Social News


Stuart’s remark: “This is a not to be missed experience, once in a generation thing. When someone ask in 20 years where were you during Bodyman, you’ll remember the exact moment of your existence in 2018.”

A strong crowd last week which made the management of PESTAB to extend the screening times of Bodyman until the 15th February. It is only being screened at the auditorium of the Information Department (Jabatan Penerangan) at the government area (old airport)

It was my second viewing and I had a great time. Third time, lucky?

One of the characters in the 90 minute featured film

With the producer/director and the social influencers of Brunei Darussalam

Beli Helix Round 2

Written by Rano Iskandar on . Posted in lifestyle, Business, Social News



Brunei Shell Marketing Co. Sdn. Bhd. (BSM) launches another round of #BeliHelix promotion after the great response from the last promotion which commenced from 1st November 2017 until 31st January 2018. The Grand Prize for the first promotion is a BMW 1 Series with the first runner up getting Dubai tour packages for 2 persons and B$2,500 cash card for the second runner up, in addition to other consolation prizes. The prize presentation will be held on 25th February 2018 at Times Square. Monthly draw winners have been announced in previous months and all of them are also eligible for the grand draw.

This second promotion is to give our customers another chance to win more exciting prizes. It will be held for a period of three months starting from 8th February 2018 until 30 April 2018. Similar to the first promotion, there will be five (5) monthly draw prizes to be won for the months of March and April. The Grand Draw of the #BeliHelix Promotion II is set to be held in May 2018. The date and venue for the grand draw shall be announced by BSM in due course.

The #BeliHelix promotion II comprises of monthly consolation prizes such as air tickets, latest gadgets, electrical appliances and more. For this round, the Grand Prize will be a unit of the latest Nissan X-Trail. First runner up will be a Hong Kong Travel Package for two persons and the second runner up will receive B$2,500 cash card. Other consolation prizes will also be available for the lucky customers.

Shell Helix customers will be entitled to one (1) entry form for each purchase of 4L of Shell Helix Motor Oil which comprises of Shell Helix Ultra, Shell Helix HX7 and Shell Helix HX5. Drop boxes for completed entry forms are available at participating BSM Authorised Distributors, Dealers and Retail Stations which can be located from www.bsm.com.bn.

According to independent worldwide consulting and research firm, Kline & Company’s Global Lubricants Industry: Market Analysis and Assessment 2017 report, Shell has been named the world’s lubricants No.1 global supplier for the 11th consecutive year.

Shell Helix Ultra with PurePlus Technology is a next-generation, fully synthetic premium motor oil made from natural gas making it stronger and less volatile at the molecular level than those made from traditional crude. Key benefits include performance through engine stress, superior protection against wear, protecting the engine in extreme temperatures and it is designed for ultimate power and performance. Engine manufacturer partners including BMW Motorsport, Hyundai Motorsport, Maserati and Scuderia Ferrari use and trust Shell Helix Ultra. The Shell Helix portfolio is suitable for both Diesel and Gasoline engines.

For further information, customers may visit our website www.bsm.com.bn, Instagram bruneishellmarketing or contact us at BSM Call Center 2244739.

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About RA

A blogger since 2002, using platforms from blogspot, joomla and now currently wordpress. A readership that stands on average of 20,000 visits per month. Also on active on social media platform on IG, Facebook and Snapchat (@ranoadidas)

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