Sky News announces Alan Jones’ sudden departure: 'Regrettably'

·3-min read

Broadcaster Alan Jones has announced he is leaving Sky News Australia after declining a lesser role from the company.

Jones, 80, said in a statement posted to his Facebook that Thursday would be his last day with Sky.

"I write in my regular Thursday column to advise you that the management at Sky News have indicated to me that they will not renew my contract, which ends on November 30," he said.

"It is, of course, the prerogative of any employer to make such a decision; but, given this is the case, I feel an obligation to my viewers to make some observations to avoid certain misconstructions,” the broadcaster said before launching into a lengthy list of his accomplishments at Sky.

Alan Jones arriving at the State Funeral for rugby league immortal Robert 'Bob' Fulton. Source: AAP
Broadcaster Alan Jones says he is leaving Sky News Australia and his last show will be tonight. Source: AAP

"In my brief time that I have been at Sky News, the audience at 8pm has significantly increased," he said.

Jones joined Sky News Australia in 2013. Since July 2020, he has been hosting his own show, Alan Jones, at 8pm Monday through Friday. 

Alan Jones says he was offered weekly appearance

The broadcaster said he had a meeting with Sky management on October 29, during which he said he "wasn’t offered another slot", but instead "an alternative offer was made to me to appear once a week on the new streaming service, Flash".

"I declined that offer," he said before citing some statistics about his popularity among the Sky News audience compared to his colleagues.

"I am only offering all of this because, for most of my professional life, I have never defended myself against criticisms of my performance," Mr Jones said.

"I merely let the figures speak for themselves, as they did in radio and, as I think you can see from above, they have, in my brief stint on television."

The 80-year-old said he had thoroughly enjoyed his experience with Sky News and thanked his fellow hosts and those working in the backroom.

"I have always been grateful for their support and I wish them and the organisation at Sky News the very best in the tasks and challenges ahead," he said.

Alan Jones, who joined Sky News Australia in 2013. Source: Sky News Australia
Mr Jones joined Sky News Australia in 2013. Source: Sky News Australia

Sky News Australia CEO confirms Jones' last day

Sky News Australia chief executive officer Paul Whittaker confirmed Mr Jones' departure in a statement posted to the company's Facebook on Thursday morning. 

"Regrettably Alan has decided not to accept a new role that was offered to him for next year. We respect his decision and know he will be missed by many.

"Alan has contributed greatly to Sky News Australia over the years, advocating without fear or favour on the issues important to many Australians.

"His compelling commentary and views on the national debate have seen him become one of the country’s most successful and influential broadcasters for close to four decades.

"I’d like to thank Alan for his commendable dedication and service to Sky News. We wish him well."

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