BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN—Short and sweet were the speeches and long was the queue on the banquet table after a 115th Independence Day flag-raising ceremony on June 12 attended by over 300 overseas Filipino workers in this oil-rich Sultanate south of Mindanao.
Philippine Ambassador to Brunei Nestor Z. Ochoa raised the national flag, as a teachers’ choir sang the national anthem, Lupang Hinirang.
Filipino community representatives wore formal Barong Tagalog or Filipiniana dresses as they recited the oath of allegiance.
Ambassador Nestor and spouse Mayie cut the Independence Day chocolate cake assisted by the Filipino Association in Brunei and Brunei Filipino Educators Club officers.
Representing the 21,000 OFWs in Brunei were groups of educators, (Brunei’s biggest group of Filipino professionals), nurses, religious, service crew, department store and supermarket, and photographers, said Labor Attaché Ana C. Dione.
Father Arin blessed the food and everybody headed to the banquet table: pancit molo (a soup of minced beef in meat salsa wrappers), chicken barbecue, seafood fried rice, tomato falsa with salted egg, guinatan halu-halo, balinghoy (steamed cassava in banana leaves), turon (banana fritters), palitaw (steamed ground glutinous rice), tableya (drinking chocolate), coffee and tea. Antonio Alabastro