The New Normal in Brunei

By Siti Nurhidaayah Barahan

Imagine waking up in the morning, doing your morning routine as usual, then opening an app to do a health self-assessment to get a colour that would determine whether you’re good to be out or not. As weird as it sounds, this is the new normal in Brunei.

The colours that you get is based on your health assessment, e.g. green meaning you are healthy and good to enter a premise.

Apart from the global collective new normal of practising good personal hygiene, avoiding physical contact, etc. this BruHealth application has really change the way we move around here.

I have to say, it is a good addition, at least it helps the government to do tracing better. As a citizen, we are all adapting to it. Teaching our parents, guiding them on how to use it for the benefit of all. Of course, it was weird at first having these new extra measures before entering a premise, even your workplace; getting our body temperature check, sanitizing our hands, and now scanning a QR code. But having to do this for weeks now, I am getting to get used to it. Yes, I unfortunately still forgot to scan my QR code sometimes when it’s just a quick in-and-out of a store but again, we are all still adapting to this new normal.

I am thankful that in Brunei, all are being cooperative fighting against this pandemic. Listening to some narratives, however, makes me wish that we could be more inclusive towards fighting this together because it’s OUR fight – not just one group of people’s fights. ∎


circle-cropped (5)Siti Nurhidaayah Barahan is an ASEFEdu and YSEALI Academic Fellowship Fall 2016 alumna based in Brunei. She also studied Conflict, Security & Development at The University of Leeds in England.

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