• 23 May, 2024

Close Local elections in Trinidad

Close Local elections in Trinidad

Close Local elections in Trinidad

Trinidad as local elections this Monday. The outcome is unpredictable, according to pollster Dr Vishnu Bisram .
The last local elections in 2019 was a tie — the ruling and opposition parties won seven local authority each. The 2023 elections are also projected to be a toss up.
 
According to pollster Dr Bisram, supporters of the opposition United National Congress have closed rank with their party following the return of former FIFI jefe Jack Warner and the alliance with former National Security Minister Gary Griffith’s NTA and are lining up behind the coalition for Monday’s local government elections. The UNC  has consolidated its Indian base while PNM African supporters appear disinterested and dispirited for LGE 2023. The UNC is ahead of PNM in popular support.  The minor parties like PEP and PDP are trailing way behind.  PEP is mostly supported by I do and while PDP is mostly supported by Africans. If the trend holds thru Monday, the UNC is likely to make gains in seats. This is the latest finding of an ongoing tracking poll being conducted by Bisram for NACTA .
 
He has been conducting surveys in Trinidad since the 1980s. The poll has interviewed hundreds of likely voters since Jack Warner entered the fray a couple weeks ago. His entry has energized and excited the UNC base and has not triggered a similar response from the PNM base. Many traditional UNC supporters who were not interested in voting a month ago in earlier polls, now indicate they will vote. A month ago, only 30 percent of the population were interested in casting ballots, with a majority going for the UNC. That turnout number has inched up with most going to UNC. This could help the UNC in competitive marginal seats in the local authorities of Sangre Grande, San Fernando, Siparia, and Chaguanas. All these authorities are divided between Indians and Africans.
 
The latest findings put UNC ahead in Siparia and Chaguanas. Sangre Grande and San Fernando are toss up. In San Fernando, PNM leads in four seats with UNC leading in three seats and two toss ups. In Grande, PNM and UNC leads in three seats with two seats a toss up. Turnout is benefiting UNC because PNM supporters appear turned off. If PNM is able to arrest or turn around the apathy, it will retain Sando and capture Grande.
 
This is a landmark election that will have a significant bearing not only on local election but the general election in 2025. If UNC loses, pressure will be on the UNC leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar to step down. If PNM loses a corporation, it still has two more years in office to rebrand itself.
 
The outdone is unpredictable. The minor parties are not out of the contest. They could create upsets and or decide the outcome in several marginal seats including Barataria and two seats in Chaguanas, among several others.