Friday, March 23, 2012

My first boss

Veteran journalist Tan Sri Mazlan Nordin who died yesterday (22/03/12), has been described as a true journalist who remained non-political throughout his life. He was my first boss - Group Chief Editor -  when I began my career at Utusan Melayu/Malaysia in 1982.

My second boss, former Information minister Tan Sri Zainuddin Maidin said Mazlan was a real journalist, who was sociable in nature despite his hearing difficulties. Zainuddin or Zam, took over a Group Chief Editor when Mazlan became the Group Executive Chairman.
Zainuddin who had served under Mazlan as the Utusan Melayu editor and chief group editor, said Mazlan was patriotic and nationalist who keep himself updated and well-informed with reading.
“Even National Journalism Laureate Tan Sri A. Samad Ismail who was his 'sifu', recognised him as a nationalist,” he said.
Zainuddin said Mazlan’s non-partisan policy and patriotism can be seen clearly in the way he ran the Utusan Melayu and the editorial policy during his time.
Describing him as a hard worker, he said when the paper was operating in Singapore, Mazlan used to sleep in the office with the printing workers, using newspapers as a mat.
“He was also a very up to date person, whom I’ve never seen without reading something at the office. It was under him that we enjoyed our highest circulation in the country,” he said.
Zainuddin said he had known Mazlan since the 1960s, whom he said had idolised Pak Samad and learned the ropes of journalism from him when he was asked to translate foreign news.
“I lost a great friend, who was my source of knowledge. I never went to an university but Mazlan educated and made me an intellectual, if I can call myself that,” he said with a smile.
Mazlan who was also the former chairman of the Malaysian National News Agency (Bernama),  died at 4.15 pm yesterday. He was 86.
His son, Yuri Azhar, 38, said Mazlan was admitted to the Universiti Malaya Medical Centre on Wednesday (21/3/12) after a fall in the bathroom at home. He leaves behind four sons and a daughter and four grandchildren.

Mazlan loved football. He was the only one I knew who wanted to watch all matches at the Stadium Merdeka - including age group matches.

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