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Trinidad and Tobago General Election Results - 6 November 1995
Parliament Building, Trinidad and Tobago

General Elections were held in Trinidad and Tobago on 6 November 1995 for all 36 seats in the House of Representatives.

Electoral System

The 36 members of the House of Representatives are elected in single-member constituencies by first-past-the-post voting. There is no fixed election date in effect in Trinidad and at this time; hence, the choice of election date is the prerogative of the Prime Minister.

Background

In August 1995, the Government of Prime Minister Patrick Manning (People's National Movement - PNM) declared a state of emergency and placed the Speaker of the House of Representatives under house arrest. In October, Mr. Manning called for premature elections after the Government's parliamentary majority fell to one seat.

Political Parties & Candidates

A total of 114 candidates from seven political parties contested the election.

Campaign

As in the past, the PNM - in office for all but five years since independence in 1962 - was mainly opposed by the United National Congress (UNC), headed by Mr. Basdeo Panday. The latter, active throughout his career in the trade union movement, called especially for vigorous action on unemployment and crime; he also vowed to introduce anti-racial discrimination legislation. The PNM, for its part, campaigned on its record and the economic stability achieved during it rule.

Results

Polling day results left the two main adversaries deadlocked with 17 House seats each, as both gained in the popular vote at the expense of the smaller National Alliance for Reconstruction (NAR), which as before captured the two Tobago seats. Once again, a racial divide manifested itself in the polling, with the PNM receiving most of its support from the primarily urban Afro-Trinidadian population and the UNC being backed by the mostly rural-based Indo-Trinidadian community. Four other minor parties failed to gain representation.

Given this outcome, and after the UNC and the NAR had concluded a coalition agreement, Panday was sworn in as Prime Minister on 9 November - the first Trinidadian of Indian origin to hold this post; he promised a government of "national unity". The new Cabinet was sworn in on 15 November 1995.

Voter Turnout

Voter turnout was 63.30%.

ELECTORAL SYSTEM
System First-past-the-post
Elected Members 36 single-member constituencies
VOTER TURNOUT
Total Valid Votes 525,326
Invalid Votes 4,985
Total Votes Cast 530,311
Registered Voters 837,741
Voter Turnout 63.30%
   
CRITICAL DATES
Dissolution of House Fri, 6 Oct 1995
Polling Day Mon, 6 Nov 1995
First Meeting of Parliament Mon, 27 Nov 1995
POLITICAL LEADERS
  Photo Patrick MANNING
People's National Movement (PNM)
  Photo Basdeo PANDAY
United National Congress (UNC)
RELATED RESOURCES
Representation of the People Act Download report
Constitution Act Download report
SUMMARY RESULTS
  Party Code Votes Candidates Seats
Total % votes Change Number Change
  People's National Movement PNM 256,159 48.76% +3.69% 36 17 -4
  United National Congress* Winner UNC 240,372 45.76% +16.56% 34 17 +4
  National Alliance for Reconstruction NAR 24,983 4.76% -19.86% 19 2 -
  Movement for Unity and Progress MUP 2,123 0.40% +0.40% 5 0 -
  Natural Law Party NLP 1,590 0.30% +0.30% 17 0 -
  National Transformation Party NTP 83 0.02% +0.02% 2 0 -
  People's Voice Party PVP 16 0.00% +0.00% 1 0 -
  Total   525,326 100% - 114 36 -
* Coalition of UNC with NAR
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Key
PNM= People's National Movement; PP=People's Partnership; ILP=Independent Labour Party; IND = Inpendent candidate; * Incumbent; ** Political Leader
Sources
Elections and Boundaries Commission of Trinidad and Tobago
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