By: Keile Campbell
A former broadcaster with the Broadcasting Corporation of The Bahamas (BCB),
the Bahamas’ Ambassador to the United States Wendall Jones reflected on the man
he once called a colleague and remembered the Late Minister Obie Wilchcombe as
one he admired.
Like many others, upon hearing about the death of the veteran broadcaster,
Ambassador Jones told this newspaper that he was shocked to hear of
The founder of the Jones Communication Network (JCN) also like everyone in the
country, offered his condolences to the family, friends and loved ones of Minister
“I remember the poet who said that ‘The death of every man reminds me how
weak and frail I am and every death diminishes me because I am involved with
mankind.’” Ambassador Jones recited.
“I have known Obie Wilchcombe for about 50 years, and whether he was in
broadcasting or in politics, I admired the way he conducted himself – the manner
of his bearing – so to speak. Obie Wilchcombe was an excellent reporter and
covered many assignments around the world with the father of the nation, Sir
Lynden Pindling,” Ambassador Jones recollected.
He continued to reminisce on Minister Wilchcombe’s political career, and his
tenure as Tourism Minister, a role he held during both Christie administrations
“Indeed he became such a mentee of Sir Lynden that he was encouraged to run for
the chairmanship of the Progressive Liberal Party, which he served for many years.
And then, of course being a Gran Bahamian, he ran for the seat in West End and
Bimini and won on several occasions and in 2002, he began as Minister of Tourism
and served admirably in that position.
“He carried the flag of The Bahamas and promoted The Bahamas around the world
with tremendous competence and our tourism industry benefitted from his
intelligence; his expertise and the justly manner which he conducted business,” the
Ambassador Jones described the late Minister Wilchcombe’s passing as not only a
“tremendous loss” to the current political landscape, but also a disadvantage to the
next generation of journalists and politicians.
The Love97 News founder professed that there is a tendency to not appreciate the
works and merit of people until they are no longer with us and that the nation
recognizes the contributions of the late Minister in the fields of both journalism
“We don’t reflect sometimes on the contributions of these people until their
passing, but we could do well to look at his life and the service that he has given to
the Commonwealth of The Bahamas over the last, I would say, two decades or
more. He has performed with tremendous aplomb and we in The Bahamas ought to
be a grateful nation for the contributions that he made, and I certainly hope that his
soul is resting in peace,” Ambassador Jones said.
A by election is expected in wake of the passing of Minister Wilchcombe for his
constituency West Grand Bahama and Bimini, which is now vacant.
While admitted that he does not know what direction the government will take
with regards to who will take on the portfolio of the ministerial responsibilities left
behind by Minister Wilchcombe, Ambassador Jones said he is confident that there
are choices of persons available with a wide variety of expertise to step up to the