THE journey of financial journalism that began in an exclusive manner in Bangladesh in November 1993 with the coming out of the Financial Express newspaper that AHM Moazzem Hossain spearheaded that time as its founder editor would very well continue but journalists and other stakeholders in the sector would certainly experience a shock in his death, in a hospital in Dhaka on Wednesday, after a few of weeks of illness. After his higher studies in economics from the University of Dhaka in the late 1960s, he began working as research officer, first with a bank in Pakistan and then with the ministry of finance of Pakistan. He then took up journalism, first working as a reporter with the Bangladesh Observer. He also worked with the New Nation, the private news service United News of Bangladesh, the Dhaka Courier and lastly, as economic editor, with the Daily Star before founding the Financial Express. This is when, and then onwards, he earned his fame because of his hard work in financial journalism that he continued till his death, creating a niche market for a newspaper based on what was then difficult to imagine and having led it successfully for long 25 years.
As he was ready to take on board anyone willing to work, many of the journalists who are known now came in touch with him and learnt with him of issues of financial journalism. He had been into activism of a sort to advance the cause of his work and passion, financial journalism, which he is hardly learnt to have overstepped. This might have stopped him from dealing with other national issues, but this certainly had kept him focused on a single aspect of the wide spectrum of journalism that he had worked with all his life. He had been a member on the management board of the Press Institute of Bangladesh from 1995 to 2001 and member on the board of directors of the state-run news agency Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha from 1997 to 2000. He was also president of the Economic Reporters’ Forum, when it was founded in the early 1990s by a group of journalists to create a platform to promote professional pursuits. This all is reflective of his love for financial journalism, which he has practised and encouraged others to do. He also discharged his social business functions by being on the board of some other financial institutions.
The journalists who worked with him would always remember him as a very accessible editor. And others in journalism would remember him as a man who knew what he was dealing with and how. He was certain to give his reaction to the national budget every year a day after the finance minister would give his budget speech. He is seen to have deviated from this trend in recent times when he appeared on television talk-shows on the day of the budget speech. The journalism that he set rolling would continue but people would remember him as a hard-working journalist who made his mark.
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