On Monday morning, 20 April 2020, Malaysia lost one of its most iconic voices. Farit Ismeth Emir passed peacefully after battling with cancer, at age 65.
Farit, who joined Radio Television Malaysia (RTM) in 1986, was more than a newscaster who brought us up to date with world events on the TV station’s pertinent hour-long news programme at 10pm – Dunia Jam 10, he was also known as “the man with the golden voice” amongst the media and discerning public. Already voicing several television commercials at the time, his smooth vocal landed him the gig of his life when he was casted to do voice over for Dunhill’s famous tagline – Gaya, Mutu, Keunggulan (Style, Quality, Excellence).
Fondly remember him as Pak Ngah amongst colleagues at RTM, the father of seven used to end his broadcasts with thought-provoking proverbs and poems, his best known catchline was “fikir-fikirkan” (think about it).
It goes without saying that Farit’s passing has affected many in the industry who view the man as a friend and father figure. Veteran newsreader Harjit Singh Hullon, who would often appear with Farit on Dunia Jam 10, described Farit as a “true friend” who “was always willing to help anyone who sought his advice or help, especially the new TV presenters.” Harjit told FMT, “He may look like a stern guy, but deep down he was very soft spoken and friendly.”
News of Farit’s passing was conveyed by his son, hip hop producer, DJ Fuzz who announced that his father had passed peacefully at 11am on Monday at Hospital Assunta, Petaling Jaya.
As his condition worsened, the doctor allowed Farit’s family to see him one last time the night before his passing. DJ Fuzz noted that his father was still able to recognise and converse with the family even though he was not in a good state.
Due to the MCO, Farit passed away the next morning without his family’s physical presence.
DJ Fuzz said that his father’s condition was only made known to them weeks before his passing. “Suddenly, we received news that the cancer was at Stage 4 and spreading to his internal organs,” explained DJ Fuzz.
Since this happened during MCO, the family was not able to visit Farit so they had to make do with video calls.
In accordance with rules and regulations set forth by the MCO, only 10 people were in attendance during Farit’s funeral.
The Man and Voice Behind ‘Gaya Mutu Keunggulan’
Farit’s voice also introduced the movies of the day. Back then, the airing of many blockbusters on TV was made possible by sponsorship, and the brands sponsoring the movies always had commercials and introduction slots for the movie. Farit’s voice was on almost every night.
For many Malaysians, his voice will be remembered as the voice that brought the whole family in front of the TV in anticipation of the night’s entertainment. You know, those were good times…
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