As one of Jamaica’s most read columnists if not the most read, Mark Wignall began with a brief stint writing for Jamaica’s oldest and most respected publication, the Gleaner – it’s Sunday edition. That was in 1993.
After that he spent a few years writing for the Sunday Herald alongside people like the late, iconic John Maxwell. Then in 1996 he was asked to write for the Jamaica Observer and it was there that he rocketed to the top, becoming Jamaica’s most strident and respected writer on Jamaican contemporary politics and just about every other subject matter, going where many other columnists feared to tread.
In the late 1990’s Wignall earned the ire of party supporters of Eddie Seaga, former Prime Minister and at the time, Leader of the Opposition JLP and, they along with known heavyweights in the JLP mounted a march and gathered at the gates of the Jamaica Observer to loudly protest the stinging barbs from Wignall who was the main critic of the political leader.
That was the second time in Jamaica’s history that a March was led by a political party on a newspaper; the first being the late 1970’s when the PNP leader Michael Manley and hundreds of his supporters gathered at the gates of the Daily Gleaner in acrimonious protest.
In May 2015 Wignall was again in the political crosshairs but this time ironically it included the very newspaper who had retained and supported his writings from the late 1990’s.
After writing a Sunday article heavily criticizing a politician and his supporters when he represented on the PNP ticket in the early 1990’s the politician angrily called the owner and management of the Jamaica Observer, threatened a libel lawsuit and Wignall was immediately terminated without even so much as a hearing.
Mark Wignall carries all of that energy, experience, controversy and no-holds-barred stridency to this blog. I am sure readers will be informed, provoked, entertained and will be definitely aching for more from the writer.