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Rest in Peace, Jakob Oetama

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Jakob Oetama by Jitet Kustana
“Jakob Oetama” painting by Jitet Kustana

GOLDPENCIL.ID — The founder of Kompas Gramedia and the General Leader of Kompas Daily, Jakob Oetama, died on Wednesday, September 9, 2020. The deceased passed away peacefully at Mitra Keluarga Kelapa Gading Hospital at 13:05 WIB at the age of 88 years.

Jakob Oetama is a senior journalist and national press figure. He was born on September 27, 1931 in Jowahan Village, Borobudur, Central Java. When he was young, his dream was to become a teacher like his father. He had taught at SMP Mardi Yuwana Cipanas, Part B Teacher School (SGB) Lenteng Agung Jagakarsa, and SMP Van Lith Jakarta. His interest in writing grew thanks to studying History.

Jakob Oetama’s career in journalism began with his new job as editor of the Jakarta Penabur magazine. In 1963, together with his best partner, the late Petrus Kanisius Ojong (P.K. Ojong), Jakob Oetama published Intisari magazine which became the forerunner of Kompas Gramedia.

His sensitivity to human and human issues became the spirituality of Kompas Daily, which was first published in 1965. Until more than half a century later Kompas Gramedia developed into a multi-industrial business, Jakob Oetama never let go of his identity as a journalist. For him, “Journalists are Professions, but Entrepreneurs by Luck.”

During his life, Jakob Oetama was known as a simple figure who always prioritized honesty, integrity, gratitude, and humanism. In the eyes of employees, he is seen as a ‘nguwongke’ leader and never emphasizes his status or position. The deceased adhered to the values ​​of Transcendental Humanism which he instilled as the foundation of Kompas Gramedia. Idealism and philosophy of life have been applied in every business wing of Kompas Gramedia which leads to one main goal, namely to educate the life of the Indonesian nation.

“Jakob Oetama is a legend, a true journalist who has not only left a good name, but also pride and values ​​of life for Kompas Gramedia. He is also a role model in the journalist profession who has helped to shape the history of journalism in the Indonesian nation. Even though he is now gone, his values ​​and idealism will live on and last forever, ”said Corporate Communication Director of Kompas Gramedia Rusdi Amral in a written statement.