Saturday, April 16, 2011


      Jakarta, April 16, 2011 (ANTARA) - Rosihan Anwar who passed away on Thursday (April 14) is seen by many people, particularly his colleagues, as a true journalist and a role model.
      Jakob Oetama, founder of Kompas daily and a noted press figure himself, said he had learned a lot from Rosihan whom he described as a true, independent and smart journalist and author.

       According to Jakob, Rosihan was a man of culture and also a historian. When Rosihan was chairman of the Indonesian Journalists Association (PWI) from 1968 to 1974, Jakob was the PWI secretary general.
       Sharing the view of Jakob was Ishadi SK, a prominent broadcast figure and a Trans Corp commissioner. Ishadi said Rosihan, who always diligently took notes when attending various events, was a true journalist who continued to d write until a few weeks before he died.
       "We should follow Rosihan Anwar`s example . We should read his books and articles because in them he gives us a lot of valuable lessons", Ishadi said.
       Former information minister Harmoko remembered the senior journalist as a role model as he was an idealist and humble journalist.
       From Bali, Culture and Tourism Minister Jero Wacik urged the younger generation to make Rosihan as a role model for his hard work and noble idealism.
       Rosihan died at MMC hospital on Thursday (14/4) at the age of 89, a day after leaving the Harapan Kita hospital where on March 24 he had a heart bypass surgery.
       The senior journalist is survived by three children - Aida Fatia, Omar Luthfi and Naila. His beautiful wife passed away last September 2010.

Despite of his old age, he had been very active and productive. He had diligently attended many seminars and discussions, made notes and written articles.

He had produced more than 40 books, including "Against the Currents: A Biography of Soedarpo Sastrosatomo" (2003), "Sejarah Kecil "petite Histoire" Indonesia" (2004) and "Semua Berawal Dengan Keteladanan: Catatan Kritis" ("Everything Begins With Role Model: Critical Notes" - 2007).

The late senior journalist, who had received the country`s highest Mahaputera medal from the then President Soeharto in 1974, was buried at the Heroes` Cemetery in Kalibata, South Jakarta, on Thursday afternoon.

He was buried in a military ceremony presided over by social affairs minister Salim Segaf Al Jufrie. Civilian and military officials, parliament members and community figures were seen at the ceremony.

In his speech Minister Salim said the government held a grand ceremony for the journalist`s burial in respect and appreciation for his services to the nation during his life. As a Mahaputra medal holder, he deserved to be buried at the Heroes` cemetery.

Born in Kubang Nan Dua, West Sumatra, on May 10, 1922, Rosihan had started his journalistic career during the Dutch colonial era at the Asia Raya daily. Later he led the Siasat daily from 1947 to 1957, Pedoman from 1948 to 1961 and was also recorded as one of the founders of PWI.

Arief Rahman, a prominent educator and good friend of Rosihan Anwar, considered the latter as a national educator and teacher, apart from being a journalist and author.

"The issues that he had followed closely, are cultural values and democratization, where the freedom of expression is well guaranteed by the state," Arief Rahman said.

"Nowadays, people work for a status and popularity, but Rosihan worked for the sake of the nation," he said.

"We lost a press figure concurrently a good educator," Arief said.

Former foreign affairs minister Alwi Shihab, considered Rosihan as a journalist who dared to tell the truth and had strong principles.

"Rosihan dared to say the truth amidst threats. Despite the changing political dynamism, he was always in the front line in voicing the truth," he said after paying his last respects to the late Rosihan.

Rosihan was a very productive and idealistic journalist, Alwi said, adding that he had continued to produce his works despite his old age.

"The younger generation could learn a lot from him and should read his articles. We lost a great national pressman," he said.

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has praised Rosihan for always having critical views during his lifetime but with good intention and responsibility.

After paying his last respect to Rosihan Anwar at the mortuary on Surabaya street Thursday afternoon, President Yudhoyono said that in various dialogs, Rosihan always expressed his critical views.

With the passing away of Rosihan, the president said, Indonesia had lost one of its noted press figures of many eras - from colonial, Old Order, New Order, until the reform era.

Deputy Chairman of the Judicial Commission Imam Anshori Saleh has seen Rosihan as a humble journalist who had been very much committed to press freedom.

"I admired his modesty and his commitment to press freedom," Imam, former journalist of Media Indonesia, said here Friday.

Rosihan was also one of the very few pressmen who were loyal and loved the journalism world, without being tempted to be involved in practical politics, he said.

"Therefore, he had always existed and survived until his last breath," Imam stated.

Before he died, the longest serving journalist had worked on a memoir of his love story with his wife, entitled "Soul mates: The memoirs of love and romance of Rosihan Anwar and Zuraidah Sanawi" which will soon be published. ***3***

(T.F001/A/F001/F001) 16-04-2011 13:16:33

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