Colin Forsythe’s Passing a Great Loss to Journalism

KOTA KINABALU: Colin Nicholas Forsythe, 62, as we all knew him was not the easiest of characters to get along with. Not many would argue with that.

But there was something about the brooding dry-humoured temperament that helped foment his reputation.

He was the kind of newsman who would not let go once he picked up the scent of a good story.

And he translated this knack for story-telling to good effect for the better part of 40 years, most of which he spent in Sabah.

Starting out in his late teens as a sports stringer with the Star in Johor in the early 70s, the Seramban native went through the journalism mill working for various media organisations.

As a reporter he covered the whole spectrum of news from politics, crime, general and sports.

As a sub-editor he was equally adept, using his exceptional grasp of English to excel as a wordsmith.

And as editor, he was known for rolling up his sleeves to produce a good read each day, all the time making it no secret that he expected the same of his subordinates.

Such was his passion. Period.

It was a calling not many, especially today’s younger generation of journalists, readily understood but Colin was ultimately the kind of newsman who loved the written word. And he took pains to deliver.

Among the organisations which benefitted from his talent and zeal during his chequered career were the New Straits Times, Daily Express and Sabah Times.

He also dabbled with public relations work for a time but it wasn’t long before the call of writing brought him right back.

This time venturing into online news before starting up news portal Borneo Today five years ago.

After the 2018 general election, he was appointed Press Secretary to the Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal.