The remains of the well-known Afghan journalist and former head of TOLOnews, Mujahid Kakar, who passed away on Monday following a long bout with cancer, were laid to rest in Germany on Friday.
The late journalist fought against cancer for seven years, following decades of distinguished media work in Afghanistan.
President Ashraf Ghani, Dr. Abdullah Abdullah and former president Hamid Karzai, along with diplomats, friends and fellow journalists around the world raised their voices to honor Kakar’s pioneering work for the freedom of expression in Afghanistan.
“The demise of Kakar is very painful. He did not come to Germany to live here, he came here for treatment to get his health back so that he could return to Afghanistan and continue his journalist profession,” said Najibullah Roshan, a friend of Kakar’s in Germany.
“Mr. Kakar made very brave decisions for journalism during that time,” said Anwar Hashemi, a colleague of Kakar.
“Mr. Kakar never adopted any biased approach when it comes to his journalism profession” said Shakeela Ibrahimkhel, a former colleague of Kakar,” said Shakeela Ibrahimkhel, a former colleague of Kakar.
A brief biography of Kakar:
Kakar was a senior journalist for TOLOnews before he became head of the news channel.
Many people in Afghanistan are familiar with his voice. He is considered a pioneer of freedom of speech in the country.
He joined TOLO TV in 2005 and worked in different roles including translating, presenting and hosting political programs.
Kakar became head of the TOLOnews network when it was formed in 2009.
He hosted the first-ever presidential election debate in Afghanistan on TOLOnews in 2009 — the election in which Hamid Karzai was the winner.
Kakar was around 50 years old and is survived by his two children and his wife.
In 2015, he received the Lifetime Achievement in Journalism Award from the Afghanistan Journalists Center for years of distinguished contributions in the field of journalism, and for outstanding professional performance and dedication.
His family members said that Kakar suffered for years from cancer, which was the cause of his death.