They say in the Caribbean that politics, like cricket, is a game of "glorious uncertainties. And after Trinidadian and Tobagonians elected its first female prime minister in its history the euphoria and glee has signaled the end of the road for the nation's oldest political party now appears a real possibility. Kamla Persad-Bissessar, leader of the People's Partnership a coalition of opposition parties led by the United National Congress (UNC) - was given a near complete mandate by Trinidadians and Tobagonians fed up with acrimonious and vindictive politics of the People's National Movement (PNM) and its erratic and enigmatic leader and former Prime Minister, Patrick Manning.
Campaigning on a slogan borrowed from United States politics, "Kamlamania swept the political landscape drawing thousands of disillusioned, dissatisfied and angry voters yearning for real political change. The PP's mantra of "Its Time For Change" resonated, echoed and reverberated all across the country as voters from all racial backgrounds, classes, economic persuasions, religious creeds, and callings embraced it in a grand uniquely Trinidadian coalition of the people all focused on one thing getting rid of the PNM through the ballot box.
In the final analysis the vote for Kamla Persad-Bissessar and her People's Partnership was an indictment of Manning, the failed policies of the PNM, and swirling allegations of widespread governmental corruption. In essence therefore, the rejection of the PNM by a people's collective that included Afro and Indo Trinidadians and all other races and nationalities underscored the depth of the political bankruptcy of the PNM and the chronic incumbent fatigue syndrome from which it suffered.
The political tidal wave that swept the PNM from office also carried with it an accompanying shock of a deer-caught-in-the-headlights Manning and his cronies in opposition are still dazed and confused. All with good reason because Manning had led three consecutive PNM administrations in nine years and had lost two contests when he called snap elections. He must be mulling his political future in a real way since it is inevitable that he will be blamed for the party's rout at the polls and he's bound to be challenged for the leadership by the PNM "young turks" including the charismatic Keith Rowley.
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