Brunei and Singapore can explore the opportunity of developing Islamic literature as another area of co-operation for both countries, a mosque official from the city-state said.
Ustaz Abdul Manaf Rahmat, manager of propagation and community outreach of Singapore's Masjid An-Nuur, said Islamic literature can be developed through stronger co-operation.
The Singapore official led a delegation to attend the Brunei Islamic Literature Festival, which ended last week.
"In my opinion, this field can be a starting point where we can develop more co-operation; perhaps we can have a meeting between poets and writers from both countries and maybe we can also carry out joint programmes," he said on the sidelines of his visit to the Minister of Home Affairs' residence in Kg Sungai Besar, Mukim Kota Batu yesterday.
"Furthermore, we can also compile poetic writings and other literary works from both countries to be shared, so that we would have an in-depth understanding of how literature is expressed in Brunei and in Singapore," he added.
Ustaz Abdul Manaf hoped that what he envisioned would be realised in about five years.
The head of the Singapore delegation believes that Brunei has a vital regional role in rejuvenating and developing Islamic civilisation as the sultanate has a vibrant Islamic literary culture.
During the Islamic Literature Festival organised by the Language and Literature Bureau, he was impressed with how Brunei's literary works are fully supported by the government.
Ustaz Abdul Manaf said through such support, he is confident that Brunei can realise its mission of becoming one of the most robust Islamic civilisations while helping other communities in the region.
Noting that most of the prominent literary figures in Brunei are veterans, he said it was important to produce successors who can continue developing Islamic literature. He said students can be taught and encouraged to pursue a career in Islamic literature at schools.
During the visit, Minister of Home Affairs Yang Berhormat Pehin Udana Khatib Dato Paduka Seri Setia Ustaz Hj Awg Badaruddin Pengarah Dato Paduka Hj Awg Othman briefed members of the delegation on the development of literature in Brunei.