PNM did not win only the UNC Lost

By Stephen Kangal
October 23, 2013

Stephen KangalAs the politician-in-chief of the centrifugal forces that dominated the recent LGE, the Honourable Prime Minister has conducted herself in a most apolitical manner that can only parachute her PP and the UNC into disaster survival mode. Having scuttled twice publicly and prematurely the rapprochement of Jack Warner in the period prior to July 29 for membership of the PP that paved the way for the emergence of the ILP that in fact served to weaken the PP/UNC/COP electoral appeal and performance on the October 21 LGE, she now is negating any remaining attempts geared to salvage the recent retrograde political debacle. Are the wounds too fresh?

In my view her publicly stated reaction to the October 21 meltdown of the PP/UNC/COP both in Siparia and at Rienzi is very unreal and unconvincing in claiming victory of the people. She side-stepped the conspicuous and glaring reality of her loss of territory across the political landscape wherein the PP controlled 10 Corporations and polled more than 200,000 votes in 2010.

She is now vaunting her leadership of the UNC, retention of an abridged base and disengaging from the PP. She is confusing us as to what really is her political base. She disengaged from San Juan/Barataria, St Joseph, St. Augustine, Tunapuna, Arima and other East-West Corridor marginal and regime-forming seats. The UNC is now a reduced Caroni party. That position is very unreal and puzzling to the electorate psychologically speaking. It appears that she may be disoriented very badly and unsettled by the succession of three losses/defeats. Facing a potential fourth very soon adds fuel to the fire within A quite visible body language mirrors the mind.

Now she is saying that she would not negotiate with criminals in her new capacity as the “Commissioner of Police”/judge, jury and executioner in the post October 21 hung Council in Chaguanas. She can fire and hire MP’s and Councillors. At one time on Monday night she also claimed victory in Chaguanas, that she did not lose the pivotal Chaguanas heart-land fortress.

In my view the PNM did not win this 25% turn out election. The UNC/PP/COP lost it through poor leadership and sub-standard campaigning. Chaguanas may very well be her waterloo if the political challenges posed by Chaguanas from July 29 to October 21 are not negotiated and addressed dispassionately and taken on board seriously as a collectivity rather than as a one-woman impulsive show of strength.

Chaguanas now constitutes the formula towards the road-map to reconciliation and accommodation because this is what is needed to salvage the November 4 challenge and face saving in 2015. We can do without childish positioning. Respect and appreciation for the Chaguanas imperative holds the key and the solution to vote-splitting that ravishes the UNC in all elections.

Sincerely and seriously the Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar is not making political sense these days and she may need advise and help to adopt a more politically correct and sustainable position because politics is the art of compromise. The PM is in this not for herself, her cabal and her personal preferences. She is there for the benefit of the people and the party who look up to her for leadership and politically correct, integrative decision making. She must show character.

The people of the rural and sub-urban areas have a huge stake in the contemporary political scenario and their interests must play a dominant role in the decision-responding process taking into account the disappointment spawned on Monday night and continuing unabated.

Third party interventionist strategy is sorely needed to instill a more politically sustainable and realistic response to the events of October 21. Posturing and pontificating is not making political sense because Basdeo Panday colluded with his arch enemy ANR to form the 1995 GORTT.

5 thoughts on “PNM did not win only the UNC Lost”

  1. I tend to disagree with the “woman abusing” Kangal. The UNC retained its corporations. The COP was the loser. Yet the PM gets the blame. Strange Mr. Kangal. The COP was not on its game. It did not make its presence felt in those areas where it should have won. The founder of the COP declared COP dead but no effort was made to revive or give it a fighting chance. The option for the COP is to become one with the UNC then they can fight with a higher level of determination. Then there was the ILP factor.

    The PNM as a party has always understood that power means a strong united attack on all opposing forces. When a party is in opposition they tend to fight harder. With the PNM their prayer warriors and party organization was in full gear. They were simply the hungrier party.

    Mr. Kangal instead of beating up one of the best PM should instead focus his pen on the recalcitrant voter whose idea of power is to expect the Prime Minister to win the election by herself. The way democracy works Mr. Kangal is the party supporters are expected to come out in their numbers and support their candidate. No prime minister wins an election by his or her self.

    1. I do not see the PM as a woman but as the PM of T&T. Womanhood never entered my mind when I assess her role and it is unfair of you to accuse me of woman-bashing since you cannot come out to play mas and fraid poweder.
      The other matter is that the party must mobilise its support base by engineering a flawless election day machinery to translate crowds and hype into votes.

  2. Kangal’s article exemplifies everything that is wrong with politics in T&T. His basic premise that a politician should compromise, in spite of the moral and ethical consequences, is totally flawed and typically Trinidadian. The PM showed moral courage by denying Jack Warner’s nomination in Chaguanas. Her public stance on not negotiating with a proven crook like Jack Warner after the local government elections is principled and should be revered not criticized. Also, why is Kangal attributing blame on the PM for the weaknesses of the TOP in Tobago and the COP in Trinidad? These Parties have failed to mobilize support because of the failings of their leadership and the fickle natures of their supporters who apparently stayed at home on Election Day.

    1. The Prime Minister assumed a high profile role and participation in the campaign in the THA elections and the vote was a rejection of her by the Tobagonian electorate and she must take the blame as she must for the loss in the CWC bye-election.

  3. “Now she is saying that she would not negotiate with criminals in her new capacity as the “Commissioner of Police”/judge, jury and executioner in the post October 21 hung Council in Chaguanas.” Kangal.
    The Prime Minister took the oath of office to uphold the Constitution of the honorable Republic. That document set the highest possible standard of governance, it cannot be compromised for political expediency. The PM cannot allow the dirty water of compromise and collaboration with international crooks become the norm.

    Former Prime Minister Manning took Kangal’s compromise world view and made deals with Mr Bakr, what resulted was an unleashing of violence never seen in the history of this nation. 86 trained terrorist were released upon a nation where today the struggle to bring crime under control has resulted in billions of dollars wasted. And Mr Kangal has Mr. Bakr done any jail time? Has he paid for his attempt to dethrone democracy and create an Islamic state? Has he ever been brought to justice for the murder of citizens and destruction of property?

    Warner have a long list of unethical business dealings but the PNM controlled machinery of State, has not gone after him nor will they. They simply are not willing to bring to justice a black man. Panday, the Chief Justice Sharma, Dr. Narinesingh, all receive swift justice. Mr. Kangal some people are protected by the institutions of the State. It is so the AG have to find creative ways to get back the national patrimony.

    Mr. Warner has not filed with the IC since 2006. Which reporter is willing to write anything about that? You all just scared of JW…maybe he even have a file on

    As Gandhi said the truth of one is a majority. You cannot compromise truth for a nation’s future.

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