KABUL: Former President, Hamid Karzai expressed condolences over the death of Mujahid Kakar, a journalist who passed away due to cancer.
Karzai called Kakar as an inspiration to professional journalism and one of pioneers in reporting, who served in institutionalizing of freedom of speech in the country.
The former president wished paradise for the dead and patience for his family and friends.
Veteran Afghan journalist and former head of TOLOnews Mujahid Kakar passed away in Germany on Monday following a long fight against cancer, said members of his family.
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.
The Journalists Safety Committee in a statement says the death of Mujahid Kakar is a big loss to the media community in Afghanistan, which is a view echoed by many.
President Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah in separate statements expressed their condolences to the media family over the death of Kakar and said his death is a big loss for Afghanistan.
Former National Security Advisor Rangin Dadfar Spanta said Mujahid Kakar was a dedicated journalist and that Afghanistan lost a journalist who was committed to the principles of freedom and justice.
Former president Hamid Karzai in a statement extended his condolences over the death of Afghan journalist Mujahid Kakar and says he was a pioneer of journalism in Afghanistan who provided “appreciable services to the freedom of speech that will never be forgotten.”
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.