Allahyarham Zainon Ahmad bacakan puisi setiap hari untuk isteri
25 April 2013
KUALA LUMPUR - Ketika ramai yang mengingati Allahyarham Zainon Ahmad sebagai seorang yang disenangi dalam kalangan pengamal media, anaknya Zalinda menceritakan satu lagi sifat Zainon - seorang suami dan bapa penyayang.
"Saya tahu anda semua sayangkan suami dan isteri masing-masing, tetapi pada saya, masih terngiang-ngiang suara bapa membacakan puisi setiap hari buat ibu, sebagai tanda kasih dan cinta mereka," kata Zalinda, 44.
Dengan suara yang sebak, beliau menceritakan antara puisi yang sering dibacakan Allahyarham bapanya ialah daripada hasil karya William Shakespeare.
"Arwah juga seorang bapa yang penyayang, sentiasa ada di saat kami memerlukannya," katanya.
Zalinda dan adiknya Ety Zainon, 40, menghadiri majlis tahlil yang dianjurkan Kelab Akhbar Kebangsaan (NPC) untuk wartawan veteran Zainon, yang mesra dipanggil 'Pak Non' di Pusat Konvensyen Sime Darby, Bukit Kiara, di sini.
Kira-kira 80 orang pengamal media hadir, terdiri daripada kebanyakannya rakan wartawan yang seangkatan dengan Allahyarham dan juga wartawan muda yang banyak belajar di bawah bimbingan Zainon yang suka berkongsi pengetahuan dan pengalaman dengan mereka.
Presiden NPC Mokhtar Hussain berkata kelab itu mengambil inisiatif menganjurkan majlis berkenaan kerana Zainon seorang yang dihormati ramai pihak terutama pengamal media dan beliau juga bekas presiden NPC.
"Walaupun saya tidak pernah bekerja di bawah Pak Non, beliau sering datang kepada kami bertanya khabar tentang tugas harian dan memberikan nasihat. Beliau ketika itu timbalan pengarang kumpulan New Straits Times (NST)," kata Timbalan Presiden NPC Yushaimi Yahaya.
Bekas Ketua Pengarang Berita Bernama Abdul Karim Shukor berkata Allahyarham Zainon sering menjadi rujukan wartawan muda dan beliau pula tidak jemu mengajar dan berkongsi ilmu dengan mereka.
"Sifatnya tak ubah seperti cikgu kepada mereka, termasuk anak saya sendiri Farah Naz (kini pengarang berita NST)," katanya.
Dalam ucapannya mengenai Allahyarham Zainon, bekas Pengarang Kumpulan NST Datuk A.Kadir Jasin berkata Zainon dalam ingatannya seorang wartawan yang sangat tenang dan beliau boleh membuat liputan di kawasan konflik seperti Mindanao dan Afghanistan di mana "beliau boleh berpakaian seperti seorang mujahideen dan duduk makan bersama mereka."
NPC melalui Tabung Kebajikan Wartawannya turut menyerahkan cek bernilai RM2,000 kepada keluarga Allahyarham Zainon yang disampaikan bekas Menteri Penerangan Tan Sri Zainuddin Maidin yang juga bekas ketua pengarang kumpulan Utusan Melayu. - Bernama
Nama Besarnya Di Hati Kita
Zainon Ahmad (Allahyarham) turut meraikan perlantikan saya sebagai Senator dalam tahun 1998 di suatu majlis yang diberikan oleh rakan-rakan wartawan di sebuah hotel di Kuala Lumpur. Di kanan sekali ialah Allahyarham Tan Sri Mazlan Nordin.
Kita tidak dapat menilai erti persahabatan seseorang dengan kita, tetapi bila pemergian mengejutnya amat mendalam sebagai suatu kehilangan, maka kita baru tersedar, bahawa Allahyarham telah menempah kebesarannya di hati kita.
Demikianlah bila saya menerima berita kematian sahabat lama Zainon Ahmad 70 yang terbilang sebagai seorang wartawan dengan laporan-laporan besar, penulisan politik dan sosial yang bebas, berani, sinis, tajam dan tidak pernah sunyi dari kritikan.
Jawatan terakhirnya ialah Editor Perunding akhbar The Sun.
Rakan-rakannya tidak tahu bahawa beliau sakit dalam keceriaannya. Kepada sayapun tidak pernah diceritakannya. Suaranya menjawab panggilan telefon pun senantiasa riang.
Maka itu kematian Zainon kerana kanser hati di Temenggong Hospital Raja Perempuan Zainab, Kota Bharu, Kelantan pada hari Rabu 27 Mac 2013 telah mengejutkan semua kawan dalam dunia kewartawanan dan juga mereka yang mengenalinya. Jenazahnya telah disemadikan di Tanah Perkuburan Islam Kampung Banggol pada 28 Mac 2013.
Takziah kepada isterinya Hasnah Abdulllah, anak-anak serta kaum keluarganya yang ditinggalkan.
Saya mengenalinya sejak beliau berkhidmat dengan New Straits Times dan saya di Utusan Melayu. Laporannya yang masih menjadi ingatan saya hingga sekarang ialah dari Afghanistan ketika negara itu berada dalam krisis persengketaan dan beliau berada di tengah-tengah pejuang-pejuang Mujahideen yang menghadapi pelbagai ancaman.
Wartawan yang dedikasi kepada profesyennya mencari kepuasan dalam memberikan laporan besar kepada pembacanya dengan kesanggupan mengambil risiko yang tinggi. Zainon adalah salah seorang darinya.
Kehilangan Zainon dirasakan besar kerana kebesaran itu telah sekian lama dirasakan dari penulisan-penulisannya.
Jenazah Zainon Ahmad selamat dikebumi
Mohd. Zahazan (tiga dari kanan) menyiram air mawar di atas pusara ayahnya selepas majlis pengebumian Allahyarham Zainon Ahmad di Tanah Perkuburan Islam Kampung Banggol, Jalan Pantai Cahaya Bulan, Kota Bharu, Kelantan, semalam.
KOTA BHARU 28 Mac - Jenazah Editor Perunding akhbar The Sun, Zainon Ahmad yang meninggal dunia akibat kanser hati semalam, selamat dikebumikan di Tanah Perkuburan Islam Kampung Banggol di sini pagi ini.
Jenazah Allahyarham yang sebelum itu disembahyangkan di rumahnya di Jalan Bayam, dikebumikan pada pukul 10.30 pagi.
Zainon, 70, atau lebih mesra dengan panggilan Pak Non meninggal pada pukul 2.25 petang semalam di Hospital Raja Perempuan Zainab II (HRPZII) di sini selepas dimasukkan ke wad rawatan rapi hospital tersebut Selasa lepas.
Beliau meninggalkan balu, Hasnah Abdullah, 65, dan empat anak, Zalinda, 45; Zainorin, 44; Zuhailawati, 40, dan Mohd. Zahazan, 37.
Turut hadir pada majlis pengebumian itu ialah Presiden Kelab Akhbar Kebangsaan (NPC), Mokhtar Hussain yang juga Editor Bernama serta Pengarah Eksekutif Operasi Berita dan Editorial Media Prima Berhad, Datuk Ahmad A. Talib.
Allahyarham yang dilahirkan di Semeling, Lembah Bujang, Kedah pada 1942 merupakan seorang guru selama tiga tahun sebelum menyertai dunia kewartawanan sejak 35 tahun lepas.
Beliau memulakan karier kewartawanan dengan menyertai The New Straits Times pada 1978 dan dinaikkan pangkat sebagai Penolong Editor Kumpulan akhbar itu pada 1997 sebelum menjadi Editor Perunding pada 2001.
Setahun kemudian pada 2002, beliau menyertai akhbar The Sun sebagai Ketua Pengarang.
Anak sulung Allahyarham, Zalinda berkata, beliau yang mendapat tahu bapanya sakit tenat semasa berada di Amerika Syarikat kerana urusan kerja, bergegas pulang pada hari yang sama.
Beliau berkata, sebelum ke Amerika Syarikat, bapanya telah berpesan untuk membeli buku mengenai perang gerila dan beliau merasa amat terkilan kerana tidak dapat memenuhi permintaan bapanya itu.
Malah beliau turut terkilan kerana tidak dapat menjaga bapanya semasa dalam keadaan kritikal di hospital kerana dalam perjalanan pulang dari Amerika Syarikat, katanya kepada pemberita.
Zalinda bagi pihak keluarganya mengucapkan terima kasih kepada semua pihak yang terlibat dalam mengurus pengebumian jenazah bapanya termasuk pihak hospital.
Sementara itu, Ahmad menyifatkan kembalinya Zainon ke rahmatullah, dunia kewartawanan kehilangan seorang wartawan yang dihormati yang tidak lokek mencurahkan ilmu kewartawanan kepada rakan seperjuangan termasuk beliau sendiri.
"Saya kenal rapat dengan arwah pada 1989 ketika itu dia bertugas di New Straits Times, manakala saya di akhbar Business Times," katanya.
Mokhtar pula berkata, beliau kagum dengan semangat perjuangan Zainon di bidang kewartawanan kerana walaupun telah berada pada usia persaraan, namun Allahyarham masih aktif turun padang membuat liputan berita.
Beliau berkata, semangat kegigihan Allahyarham wajar dijadikan contoh kepada wartawan muda. - BERNAMA
The Sun’s consultant editor Zainon Ahmad dies
Published: 27 March 2013
KOTA BARU, March 27 — The Sun daily’s consultant editor Zainon Ahmad died due to liver cancer today. He was 70.
According to his daughter, Zuhailawati, Zainon died at 2.25pm at the Raja Perempuan Zainab II Hospital (HRPZII) here.
She said her father was admitted to the hospital after complaining of chest pains at their house in Jalan Bayam here at 1am yesterday.
HRPZII director Datuk Dr Mohd Ghazali Hasni Mat Hassan confirmed Zainon died at the intensive care ward at 2.25pm.
Zuhailawati said her mother Hasnah Abdullah, 65, and two siblings were at his bedside when he died.
According to Zuhailawati, her father’s body will be brought to their house in Jalan Bayam here before being laid to rest at the Banggol Muslim cemetery in Kota Baru tomorrow.
Zuhailawati said her father had contracted liver cancer for quite sometime and it began to get serious in October last year.
She said before this, her father had been getting treatment at a private hospital in Subang Jaya, Selangor.
Zainon, who was a teacher for three years before joining journalism 35 years ago, was the assistant group editor of The New Straits Times Group. He later joined The Sun as the editor-in-chief in 2002.
He was a regular speaker on the role of the media at local and international conferences and was active in various young journalist training programmes.
He was bestowed the Media Personality Award in 2010.
Zainon held a degree in History and a Masters’ degree in International Relations from Universiti Malaya.
He had also studied newspaper management at the Thomson Foundation, London and was a fellow of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tuft University, Boston in the US. — Bernama
Zainon Ahmad: A Pure-Bred Malaysian Journalist
Published on Thursday, 28 March 2013 12:27
. Zainon when he was theSun's editor-in-chief. Pic: theSun
PETALING JAYA: The late Zainon Ahmad, theSun's consultant and political editor who passed away today, had a stellar career in journalism, having been reporter and editor for the last 35 years.
Popularly known as Pak Non, his trademark fortnightly column 'What They Say' featured four multi-racial characters discussing current issues in coffee shops or restaurants.
He was awarded by the Malaysian Press Institute as Journalist of the Year for his coverage of the insurgency in southern Philippines in 1986.
Despite his wealth of experience and eminence, having interviewed world leaders and covered high-profile events in modern history, Zainon was gracious and down-to-earth.
Born in 1942, in Semeling, Lembah Bujang, in Kedah, he grew up in humble circumstances in the estates to later become a teacher before joining the New Straits Times in 1978.
He later led theSun as its first Editor-in-Chief when it was re-launched as a free paper in 2002.
Zainon held a degree in History and a Masters' degree in international Relations from Universiti Malaya. He had also studied newspaper management at the Thomson Foundation, London and was a fellow of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tuft University, Boston, US.
He also represented Malaysia in many regional conferences, raising media-related issues.
While receiving the Media Personality Award at the annual Kancil Awards in 2010, he had thanked theSun for giving him the space to write articles critical of the government's efforts to unite the nation.
"Every year I become a little more serious in my pursuit of the truth, and bolder and braver in expressing it in my articles especially in my column," he said, emphasising his wish for a Malaysia for all regardless of their place of origin.
In an interview given to theSun's former assistant news editor Jacqueline Ann Surin for The Nut Graph web portal last year, Zainon had recounted how growing up in the estates, where he acquired fluency in Tamil, had shaped his outlook and personality.
"I believe in Malaysia. I believe in multi-racial Malaysia and I think that there is a place for everybody here. If, for instance, all the Indians or the Chinese suddenly decide to leave Malaysia, I think it won't be Malaysia," he said in the interview.
Zainon is survived by his wife Hasnah Abdullah, four children and 14 grandchildren.
- Cindi Loo and Michelle Chun/ theSun
"If…suddenly, all the Indians or the Chinese decide to leave Malaysia, I think it won’t be Malaysia." — Zainon Ahmad (8 February 2012
Zainon Ahmad (1942-2013) was the consultant editor of theSun, as well as a former Group Associate Editor of the New Straits Times. In 1986, he was conferred the Malaysian Press Institute's "Journalist of the Year" award for his series of reports on the insurgency in southern Philippines.
Brief biography: Born in Semeling, a small village near Bidong, on the way to Lembah Bujang in Kedah, Zainon Ahmad obtained his Bachelor's degree in History and his Master's in International Relations from Universiti Malaya (UM). He worked as a teacher for 3 years before becoming a journalist with the New Straits Times.
During the mid- to late 1980s, Zainon Ahmad was made the New Straits Times' editor-at-large, travelling and covering assignments in southern Thailand, Cambodia, the Philippines, India, Afghanistan, and Latin America. Of this period, he said, "I was really happy! They thought it was a punishment but I thought it was a reward".
In 1985, Zainon Ahamd covered the liberation war in southern Philippines and was conferred the Malaysian Press Institute's "Journalist of the Year" award the following year for his series of reports. He was promoted to Asst Group Editor of the New Straits Times in 1997, then aged 55, and subsequently to Group Associate Editor. Zainon was subsequently sacked as editorial consultant in 2001, as a result of the politics within the newsroom of the UMNO-owned paper.
In 2002, then aged 60, Zainon Ahmad was appointed Editor-in-Chief of theSun. He was made consultant and political editor in 2008. Zainon's fortnightly column in theSun, entitled What They Say featured a Mohan, Azman, Zain, and Chong, usually in a teh tarik place, discussing a current issue. These were often real conversations that he overheard. Most of his articles were about race relations. Zainon also wrote about fatwas. He said: "I think there are too many fatwas. You know, these fatwa councils, they are not legislative bodies. And you can't say the fatwas don't affect non-Muslims because some do. Just think of the problems caused by a husband who converts to Islam. All the Middle Eastern countries, there's no problem. It is here. They say Muslims here need to be protected. How many NGOs have come up to protect Muslims? Do the Muslims need further protection when the state is already protecting them?"
On 26 March 2013, Zainon Ahmad was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of Hospital Raja Perempuan Zainab II (HRPZII) in Kota Bharu, Kelantan, after he lost consciousness. He died of liver cancer the following day.
1942: Zainon Ahmad was born in Semeling, a small village near Bidong, on the way to Lembah Bujang in Kedah. His maternal grandfather came from Kerala and married a local woman in a fishing village, not far from Kota Kuala Muda town.
Early childhood: Zainon Ahmad spent his early childhood in Semeling until after the Japanese occupation. He attended a Malay kindergarten when he was 3 or 4 years old.
1946 (age 4): Zainon Ahmad to Patani Para estate, about 12 miles from Semeling, when his father moved there.
Unknown: Zainon Ahmad grew up with Tamils in an estate in Kedah. He attended a Malay school near his house. For a while before going to the Malay school, he was also going to the Tamil school which was attached to a Tamil Hindu temple.
Zainon Ahmad's parents divorced but she continued to live in the estate until he was in Form 2 when she decided to return to her kampung in Kuala. His mother told him, "If you follow me, you can't go to school. I can't afford it." An Indian classmate and his father, an estate conductor, said, "Why don't you come and stay with us?" There was a storeroom for the rubber scraps attached to their house and
Zainon stayed in that room until Form 5. The Malay villagers asked, "Why are you staying there?" and he was ostracized by some in his own community. Zainon was separated from his mother and siblings, but he visited them whenever he could.
After attending the Malay school, Zainon Ahmad attended St Theresa School, a mission school in Sungai Petani, where he read the Bible for a paper on religious knowledge. In St Theresa School, he did quite well in his Lower Certificate Examination (LCE) and because only 10 passed the exams, they were transferred to Ibrahim Secondary School. Zainon continued to work in the estate but despite this, he did quite well in his School Certificate of Examination. (He got 1st grade and was praised at the school assembly.)
Zainal Ahmad worked as a mechanic at the then Penang Harbour Board. At the estate, his job was to bring Malays from the villages to work as laborers because the estate workers were predominantly Tamil.
Unknown: Zainon Ahmad graduated with a Bachelor's degree in History and a Master's in International Relations from Universiti Malaya (UM).
1975 (age 33): Zainon Ahmad became a teacher.
1978 (age 36): Zainon Ahmad joined the New Straits Times.
Mid to late 1980s: Zainon Ahmad was made the New Straits Times' editor-at-large, travelling and covering assignments in southern Thailand, Cambodia, the Philippines, India, Afghanistan, and Latin America.
1985 (age 43): Zainon Ahmad covered the liberation war in southern Philippines.
1986 (age 44): Zainon Ahmad was conferred the Malaysian Press Institute's "Journalist of the Year" award for his series of reports on the insurgency in southern Philippines.
1996 (age 54):
June 5: Zainon Ahmad interviewed Nur Misuari, the governor of the autonomous region of Muslim Mindanao, in Manila. (Nur Misuari was also a guerilla fighter and leader of the Moro National Liberation Front.)
November 15: Zainon Ahmad interviewed South Korean President Kim Young-Sam at the presidential palace in Seoul.
1997 (age 55): Zainon Ahmad was promoted to Asst Group Editor of the New Straits Times and subsequently to Group Associate Editor.
2001 (age 59): Zainon Ahmad was sacked as editorial consultant of the New Straits Times, as a result of the politics within the newsroom of the UMNO-owned paper.
2002 (age 60): Zainon Ahmad was appointed Editor-in-Chief of theSun.
2008 (age 66): Zainon Ahmad was made consultant and political editor of theSun.
2013 (age 71): March 26: Zainon Ahmad was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of Hospital Raja Perempuan Zainab II (HRPZII) in Kota Bharu, Kelantan, after he lost consciousness, believed to be due to liver cancer.
March 27: Zainon Ahmad died of liver cancer.
Najib presents award to late veteran journalist Zainon Ahmad
26 May 2014
The eldest daughter of late veteran journalist Zainon Ahmad, Zalinda Zainon, holding up her father's award at the 2014 National Press Club Awards Nite at Majestic Hotel.
SUNPIX by ZULFADHLI ZAKI
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak presents the National Press Club-Ambank Media Legend award and the National Press Club-TM Lifetime Achievement Award to Pak Non's eldest daughter, Zalinda Zainon, (R) at the 2014 National Press Club Awards Nite at Majestic Hotel. SUNPIX by ZULFADHLI ZAKI
KUALA LUMPUR: Though it has been over a year since his passing, late veteran journalist Zainon Ahmad (pix) is still remembered for his great contributions to journalism.
Zainon, who was fondly known as "Pak Non", was presented with the National Press Club-Ambank Media Legend award and the National Press Club-TM Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2014 National Press Club (NPC) Awards Nite today.
It was a fitting reward for a man who dedicated his life to the field.
Zainom was theSun's consultant and political editor when he passed away at 70 due to liver cancer in March last year.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak presented the prestigious award which was received on Zainon's behalf by his eldest daughter, Zalinda Zainon, who was present at the event.
"On behalf of my family I would like to thank NPC, and his peers for this honour. It would have been better if he had received this himself," Zalinda said upon receiving the awards.
Also presenting at the awards night was Zainon's wife, Hasnah Abdullah, 67, who expressed her gratitude about him receiving the awards.
Zainon held a Bachelor's degree in History and a Master's in International Relations from the University of Malaya.
He served as a teacher for three years before becoming a journalist 36 years ago and was formerly group associate editor of The New Straits Times.
He became editor-in-chief of theSun in 2002.
He had also won the Media Personality Award in 2010.
Zainon had been more than just a senior editor or consultant for theSun family. He was a father, and sometimes a grandfatherly, figure to most of the staff at theSun.
His trademark laughter would tickle almost anyone hearing him even from afar.
He was a source of inspiration to many with his passion for journalism, and his dedication to the paper was undying even at 70.
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