Family and friends of the late Margo MacDonald are today calling for a portrait of her to be permanently hung in Holyrood. Her husband, Jim Sillars, said the money left over from the ‘Margomobile’ fund that operated during the referendum campaign will now be used to commission a portrait from leading Scottish artist Gerard M Burns.
Mr Burns certainly has an unenviable task. How do you capture a character so rich and so loved as Margo? A woman who transcended politics and who was loved by those on all sides of the debating chamber. We look forward to seeing the work.
Currently, the Scottish Parliament has no place where it commemorates the lives of former MSPs and there are a few that probably don’t deserve to held in high regard.
But if we are to remember anyone in Holyrood, then surely the very first should be Margo.
In an era where many of those in Holyrood go unrecognised by the general public, Margo hardly even needed a surname as everyone knew who she was. At her memorial ceremony, taxi drivers stood shoulder to shoulder with government ministers to pay tribute and wipe away a tear.
This is the type of politicians we need in Scotland. Those who connect with the public and who fearlessly champion unpopular issues because they believe it is right. Margo did this to the end with her right-to-die bill.
And her words on unity during the referendum debate should never be forgotten.
Margo also led the way for the Holyrood to be a chamber full of strong women.
She wasn’t here to see it, but would have smiled at the idea of Scotland’s first female First Minister in Nicola Sturgeon.
Ms Sturgeon should now pressure the parliament to ensure to that we remember Margo, a woman who led the way in so many areas.