Trinidad and Tobago Elects Kamla Persad-Bissessar, First Female Prime Minister

May 25, 2010 Updated: May 25, 2010

Trinidad and Tobago elected the country’s first female prime minister, Kamla Persad-Bissessar, on Tuesday, according to preliminary results.

Persad-Bissessar was voted into Trinidad and Tobago's top job after what The Trinidad Newsday described as a “landslide victory.” The new female prime minister also signals a power shift in the country’s political landscape in favor of “the People’s Partnership.” The parliament for the country of Trinidad is now dominated the Peoples Partnership rather than the People’s National Movement (PNM) led by political mogul Patrick Manning, reported the Trinidad Newsday website.

“I am overwhelmed by your love, I am humbled by your devotion, I am honured by your trust. As Prime Minister-elect of our great republic of Trinidad and Tobago, let me say how grateful I am by your overwhelming response to the People’s Partnership,” Persad-Bissessar in her victory speech, according to The Trinidad Newsday.

The People’s Partnership is conglomerate political group in Trinidad and Tobago that is made up of United National Congress (UNC), Congress of the People (COP), and the Tobago Organization of the People, (TOP). The party is now the dominate political force in the country holding 29 seats in the parliament over the PNM’s 12 seats.

Persad-Bissessar has aspirations to revamp Trinidad and Tobago whose people have been bogged down by exploitation by larger global powers along with rampant organized crime. It seems the nation’s people responded to promises of change delivered by Persad-Bissessar during her campaigning, in similar style to U.S. President Barack Obama who visited the nation last April.

“This general election comes at a defining moment in our nation’s history. The oil and gas boom of the last decade has fizzled out and the hard work of building a sustainable economy stands before us,” Persad-Bissessar wrote in a pre-election message published in full in the Trinidad Express that outlined details of her priorities and promises.

“You can hold me accountable to the promise of change that we offered you. I knew the time had come. A new page has been turned and the responsibility to each of you is now on my shoulders. I will not let you down,” said Persad-Bissessar in the victory speech.