Less than a month after he ended his 35-year radio career citing doctor’s orders, Sky News has announced the conservative broadcaster Alan Jones will host a new program four nights a week on the network.
Sky announced on Sunday that “Australia’s most accomplished and talked about broadcaster” had signed on to host the program, called Alan Jones, four nights a week from next month.
Jones had already co-anchored a program on Sky two nights a week, but the decision to expand his role adds to an already cluttered roster of conservative pundits on Sky.
The network also hosts News Corp columnists Andrew Bolt and Chris Kenny, former Tony Abbott adviser Peta Credlin, and a slew of lesser-known rightwing commentators including the editor of the Australian edition of Spectator magazine, Rowan Dean.
“It’s a privilege to be asked to work with such a strong and committed team. I am sure that through the engagement with my viewing audience, we will be able to make a difference,” Jones said in a statement.
“There are real issues facing Australians today. We will be addressing them.”
Jones, 79, has suffered numerous health issues of late – he was forced off the air in late 2018 due to painful back spasms – and cited doctor’s orders when he announced his decision to quit radio station 2GB in May.
Throughout his long career he maintained strong ratings despite a long list of controversies including the cash for comment saga and his attacks on numerous women in power, including the former prime minister Julia Gillard and the New Zealand prime minister Jacinda Ardern.
After the 2019 comments about Ardern, social media activist groups Mad Fucking Witches and Sleeping Giants targeted Jones’s advertisers, leading to an exodus of brands.
In announcing his expanded role at Sky, the network’s chief executive Paul Whittaker said Jones had “a connection to his audience like no other”.