Renowned journalist and Deputy CEO of the Jamaica Information Service, JIS, Ian Boyne, has died.
He passed away this morning, reportedly as a result of heart failure. He was 60 years old.
The veteran journalist and columnist had been rushed to the hospital on December 2, after falling ill.
A few days later, the JIS released a statement saying he was recuperating well in the Tony Thwaites Wing of the University Hospital of the West Indies, UHWI. His sudden passing today has shocked many.
For 30 years, Jamaicans welcomed Ian Boyne into their living rooms on the inspirational Sunday television show, Profile – the longest-running personality interview show on local television. Now, no more.
It’s a sad day across the island, as Jamaicans mourn the death of one of the island’s most well-known and liked journalists, noted for his probing interview style and vast wealth of knowledge.
But many would be surprised to know, the bookish Boyne was completely self-taught post-high school, as revealed by former Prime Minister Bruce Golding in an interview this morning.
Boyne was also the host of the JIS programme, “Issues and Answers”, As well as “Religious Hardtalk”, where the Minister of Religion wasn’t afraid to take on dissenting views, as in this interview with a religious skeptic, Dr Michael Abrahams.
He was also a go-to political commentator countless times here on Nationwide News Network.
In February this year, he and another commentator, Dr. Paul Ashley, clashed over Portia Simpson Miller’s final speech in Parliament.
Ian Boyne entered the profession of journalism in 1975. He joined JIS’s predecessor, the Agency for Public Information, API, the following year as a feature writer and television broadcaster.
In 1983, he became Press Secretary and Speech Writer to then Minister of Industry and Commerce, Douglas Vaz. From then to 2002, he worked under successive administrations as a Speech Writer and Public Relations Consultant.
In 2009, the Government of Jamaica recognized his contribution to journalism by conferring upon him the Order of Distinction, CD, – Commander Class.
In 2010, Boyne was appointed Deputy CEO of JIS. He’s also been a regular columnist for the Sunday Gleaner, and is author of “Ideas Matter: Journey into the Mind of a Veteran Journalist”.
Now no longer will we hear this voice, except in the countless reruns of his many programmes, which remain ever relevant.