Broadcaster Alan Jones leaving Sky News

Broadcaster Alan Jones is leaving Sky News after the pay-TV station opted not to renew his contract.
Broadcaster Alan Jones is leaving Sky News after the pay-TV station opted not to renew his contract.

Controversial media personality and veteran broadcaster Alan Jones is leaving Sky News Australia.

"Sky News have indicated to me that they will not renew my contract, which ends on November 30," he said in a Facebook post on Thursday.

The conservative stalwart has been with the national pay television channel since 2013 and currently hosts his own program on Mondays to Thursdays in the 8pm timeslot.

The 80-year-old said the bad news was delivered during a meeting with Sky management on Friday.

He was not offered a slot with Sky News, despite his program winning its timeslot.

"An alternative offer was made to me to appear once a week on the news streaming service, Flash," he said.

"I declined that offer."

Last year, Jones left Sydney radio station 2GB with a year to go on a lucrative contract, after hosting its top-rated breakfast radio program for 18 years.

The program was noted for being closely monitored by politicians who feared the wrath of the broadcaster because of his influence with his loyal audience.

Earlier this year, Jones' regular column in Sydney's Daily Telegraph was dropped.

"All sorts of reasons were proffered, including the fact that, after 35 years of radio success, I was being told that my work 'didn't resonate'," Jones said in a lengthy Facebook post.

"Sky News rightly boasts significant personalities with strong and legitimate opinions."

Jones defended his performance and ratings saying: "My Facebook page's average engagement rate per page is vastly superior to that of Sky News Australia's Facebook page."

"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," he said.

"I have enjoyed my experience thoroughly."

Jones is a former Queensland teacher who became Wallabies coach before working as a speechwriter for the late former Liberal prime minister Malcolm Fraser.

He once tried but failed to gain Liberal preselection before going on to enjoy an unrivalled stint as a top radio broadcaster.

Australian Associated Press