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UNC New Generation

The Performance of the UNC at the LG Elections has confounded the critics and non-critics of Kamla Persad Bissessar and the UNC.  Most people after 2015 had doubts about the leadership ability of Kamla and questioned the capability of the party to survive.  After four (4) years, the party has not only survived but has proven without a shadow of a doubt that it would have to be reckoned in 2020.  Not only has the PNM fallen from grace, even amongst their own supporters but they have lost considerable Political ground to the UNC.  It is not insignificant that the UNC not only wrested Sangre Grande but increased its margins in Siparia, Chaguanas and Mayaro. 

Despite the high profile of the Attorney General Faris Al Rawi in the San Fernando West, the gain of three (3) seats by the UNC represents a major Political advancement.  The lost by one vote in Cocoyea/Tarouba is not insignificant.  Despite the boundary changes in Otaheite/Rousillac the UNC has prevailed.  Kamla defeated money and media.  She did so in keeping with her promise to usher in a new generation of leaders.  When I announced my resignation in representational politics earlier this year, I said that I hoped a new generation of leaders endowed with creativity and ideas would emerge to fashion a future of prosperity, opportunities and a Country where the youths will become globally competitive.  In her choice of candidates at the LGE she carefully balanced a new Generation of leaders with the experience of party loyalists.  This team of Candidates and Campaigners  not having even one-tenth of the financial power of the PNM, motivated and inspired by the vision of Kamla for a more egalitarian, humane and compassionate quality of Governance, took the fight on the ground to the best of the PNM and triumphed.  Leaders in this Country over and over speak of involving youth in the process of Governance.  Kamla and the UNC made it happen.  I have often argued that if young people are not brought into the corridors of decision-making and leadership, our country will face a crisis in terms of the loss of intellectual power and hence sustainability of the future in a way that causes us to compete, grow and to provide a secure and prosperous nation. 

Only the UNC through this election has demonstrated the capacity of our youth for patriotism and fashioning a society which they will enjoy.  This augurs well for it will have its impact on National Commitment, Nation Building and discipline.  In this regard, over the last four (4) years, the subtle and not so subtle attempts to denigrate, demean and destroy Kamla have all failed.  Kamla like successful leaders endowed with a rare sense of courage and determination is committed to complete her mission for T & T.  She has persevered over the taunts and innuendos in and out of Parliament and has emerged a stronger leader.  It is this Kamla that I supported into 2009 into 2010.

Over the five (5) years she was Prime Minister, she will tell you that I never minced my words when I felt she erred but equally I praised when such praise was deserved.  The PNM knows that you cannot ride roughshod over Kamla.   Every time you push her down she will rise again because her belief for a more humane society and prosperity for all remains eternal.  Whether you use the taunt of “alligators in a murky lagoon” to describe her people or tell Tobagonians to resent the Calcutta ship does not change the fact that Kamla and the UNC has an equal eye for all.  Kamla does not see the colour of your eyes, the tilt of your nose or the colour of your hair.   It is for this reason that the UNC continues to attract a diversity that is unparalleled for any political party and further it is reason that she continues to enjoy a high level  of approval rating in the wider population .  The UNC’s Umbrella covers everyone. 

Whether they admit it or not there is a new consciousness that in the UNC and Kamla there is hope for tomorrow.  Four (4) years of blaming Kamla for everything that is wrong has resulted in the PNM not paying attention to the implementation of policies and programmes in an economy that is flat and need to secure a population who are without exception victims and potential victims of a most criminal culture.  For the 64% who did not vote in this Election, maybe they like it so, but they should note that their fortunes which perhaps now give then material comfort and a sense of security is a delusion.  With increasing poverty, unemployment and an increasing impoverished middle class, the lifestyles they enjoy are also under threat. 

If Kamla were not a strong leader, she would have folded up her bed and gone home.   Her survival and revitalization of the UNC is testimony of her strength as a leader.  The UNC is an institution in which people believe because despite its pitfalls and Governance challenges between 2010 and 2015 people know deep down in their hearts that they were better off with Kamla and the UNC than with the PNM.  The next Generation of Leaders now the focus of the UNC will deliver the desires which people have longed for.  Now is not a time to be a silent spectator but to join this new Generation of Leaders and the UNC in a most sincere act of Patriotism to chart in a spirit of unity and togetherness a common vision and a shared destiny.



Dr. Surujrattan Rambachan

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