Born on 1 November 1952 in Kampung Bandar Hilir, Malacca, Prof. Datuk Dr. Abdul Latiff bin Abu Bakar is a cultural and academic luminary, a former political leader and an active and committed youth. He received his early education at the Ujong Pasir Primary school from 1959 to 1964 and pursued his secondary education at the Tun Mutahir Secondary School, Batu Berendam (formerly known as the Anglo Chinese School) from 1965 to 1967. After passing the Sijil Rendah Pelajaran Malaysia in 1967, he continued his studies at Munshi Abdullah Secondary School, Batu Berendam from 1968 to 1971.
Upon obtaining good results in the Sijil Tinggi Persekolahan Malaysia in 1971, he pursued his education in Universiti Malaya and obtained a Bachelor Degree in Arts (Hons) in 1975. He then pursued his Masters in 1980. He was awarded a PhD in 1997. Prof. Datuk Dr. Abdul Latiff began his career in Universiti Malaya as a tutor in the Department of History in 1975 to 1980. He then became a lecturer in the Creative and Descriptive Writing Programme, Department of Malay Studies (1980-1987), Associate Professor in the Department of Media Studies (1989), Head of the Writing Department (1987-1991) and Head of Media Studies Department (1997-2001), and on 12 October 2001, he was appointed as Professor.
He was also active in politics as the UMNO Leader of Bandar Hilir Branch, Malacca from 1982 to 1987, committee member of the UMNO Youth Wing for Kota Melaka Division (1984-1986), Secretary of the Cultural Bureau for Malaysian UMNO Youth Wing as well as the Working Committee Member of the Cultural and Education Bureau for UMNO Malaysia (1984-1988).
Apart from political activities, he was also passionate about voluntary works, either at the national or the Malacca state level, including joining the Malay Language Board (Pertubuhan Lembaga Bahasa Melayu) of Malacca since the 1970s and was appointed as 2nd Chief of the Malaysian National Writers Associations of Malaysia (GAPENA) since 1990. He was also a significant force in various activities organised by the National MAYC Youth Movement and was once elected as the Vice Chairman of the Malacca State MAYC from 1993 – 1998.
Since the 1980s, he had been appointed by the State Government of Malacca as a Board Member of the Malacca Museum Corporation, member of the Board of Directors for the Malacca Library Corporation and Institute of History and Patriotism Malaysia as well as the Chairman of Malacca Institute of Arts, Malaysia (2000). In fact he was also entrusted by the Malacca State Government to plan and develop the concept of ‘Bandaraya Bersejarah Negeri Berbudaya (Historical City of a Cultural State)' in 1995.
In recognition of his contributions, the Malacca State Government awarded him with the Bintang Cemerlang Melaka (BCM) Award in 1993 and Darjah Mulia Seri Melaka (DMSM) in 1995 which carries the title Datuk.
Narration on Historical personage for Mass Media 'Media – Pemangkin Kemerdekaan (Media – the Catalyst for Independence)'
16 August 2007
National Archives of Malaysia