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The Red Battle II

Written by Rano Iskandar. Posted in RA News

1948 Olympic Torch Relay in Brunei and 200 Days to Go till the Paralympics

All part of the build-up to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympics Games, a flag raising to mark 200 Days-to-Go till the Paralympics and a 1948 Olympic torch relay, with the original 1948 torch, was held this morning Saturday, 11 February here in Bandar Seri Begawan. These events are organised in collaboration with the British High Commission, the Ministry Culture Youth and Sports, the Brunei National Olympic Council, and Jerudong International School – who brought the 1948 Olympic Torch to Brunei. The Relay will begin at 0730hrs outside the ground floor of Yayasan Complex, where the British High Commission flag poles are located.

The purpose of these two back-to-back events is to use the original 1948 Olympic torch as a symbol for peace, to generate excitement and promote involvement in sport amongst young people in Brunei, and to recall the Olympic ideals of friendship, respect, excellence, determination, inspiration, courage and equality.

Additionally, this date will mark exactly 200 days-to-go until the Paralympics. The British High Commission is marking this milestone with a flag-raising carried out by Brunei Paralympian and the Hon. Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports. The UK has committed itself to staging the most accessible Olympic and Paralympics Games ever. It’s determined to use the Games to help change the way the world views disability and encourage a more open and inclusive society. Hosting the Paralympics in 2012 will be particularly significant for the UK as the country that founded the Paralympic movement in 1948, putting disability sport on the map.

After the flag-raising, the 1948 torch relay will begin. British High Commissioner, HE Rob Fenn and the Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports, Yang Berhormat Pehin Orang Kaya Pekerma Laila Diraja Dato Seri Setia Hj Hazair bin Hj Abdullah, will run with friends and colleagues, including from the Brunei National Olympic Council and Heads of Diplomatic Missions. The torch will pass through five checkpoints, with Standard Chartered Bank and International School Brunei (ISB) at checkpoint one, followed by students from Chung Hwa Middle School and SR Sungai Siamas at checkpoint two, St George’s and St Andrew’s school students at checkpoint three, SR Pusar Ulak and SR Mabohai at checkpoint four, and finishing with Jerudong International School (JIS) students with Brunei para-athletes at checkpoint five.

Standard Chartered Bank has kindly sponsored the ‘1948 Olympic Torch Run Brunei’ T-shirts and are very excited to be involved. Royal Brunei Airlines sponsored Chris and Sonia McGeorge’s return flight from London to Bandar Seri Begawan.

Commander Collins ran with the torch in 1948 and bequeathed the torch to Loughborough College when he died. It was kept in a filing cabinet for 60 years. When Chris arrived in 2008, someone gave him the torch and told him that he was now the custodian of the torch. He and Sonia decided to take it out of the filing cabinet and use it as part of a programme from Loughborough College to promote sports, health and fitness and the Olympic values amongst school students and young people.

Members of the public are welcome to line the route and cheer on the torch bearers as they run around the capital city, passing some of Brunei’s famous landmarks such as Kampong Ayer and the Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddin Mosque. Text courtesy of the British High Commission and images courtesy of Anakbrunei.com.bn

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