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Trinidad and Tobago General Election Results - 7 October 2002
Parliament Building, Trinidad and Tobago

General Elections were held in Trinidad and Tobago on 7 October 2002 for all 36 seats in the House of Representatives following premature dissolution of this body in August 2002. Elections had previously taken place in December 2001.

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

Voters went to the polls on 7 October 2002 in the third general elections in less than two years. The parliamentary elections were called in an attempt to end a political deadlock arising from a tie in previous polls in December 2001, when the two main parties, the People's National Movement (PNM) and the United National Congress (UNC) each won 18 seats in the 36-seat Parliament.

Faced with this impasse, the leaders of the two parties, Patrick Manning (PNM) and Basdeo Panday (UNC), agreed to let the President of the country appoint a Prime Minister, as stipulated in the Constitution. He did so and appointed Manning. When the Parliament convened, it failed twice to elect a Speaker, creating a new political deadlock. Without a parliamentary majority and without a Speaker to settle parliamentary decisions, the Prime Minister was unable to adopt a new budget, as the previous one was due to expire at the end of September 2002, and thus had to set a date for new elections.

Political Parties & Candidates

A total of 101 candidates and five political parties contested the election. This included two independent candidates.

Campaign

The electoral campaign was a bitter one, with Mr Manning and Mr Panday, himself a former Prime Minister, trading insults and accusations. Both the PNM and the UNC also spoke of the need for a constitutional reform, emphasizing that in order to take such a step, the Government had to have at least 24 seats in Parliament.

On polling day, security was tightened in the districts where the races were expected to be close and either party could win the parliamentary seats at stake. Nevertheless, there were no reports of serious violence.

Results

The ruling PNM won 20 of the 36 parliamentary seats at stake, with the opposition UNC picking up the remaining 16 seats.

On 9 October 2002, Patrick Manning was sworn in as the new Prime Minister.

On 17 October 2002, Barendra Sinanan was elected Speaker of the House of Representatives and Ms Linda Baboolal re-elected President of the Senate.

In the aftermath of the elction, Manning increased the number of parliamentary seats from 36 to 41 in order to prevent any future ties.

Voter Turnout

Voter turnout was 69.64%.

ELECTORAL SYSTEM
System First-past-the-post
Elected Members 36 single-member constituencies
VOTER TURNOUT
Total Valid Votes 606,767
Invalid Votes 2,804
Total Votes Cast 609,571
Registered Voters 875,260
Voter Turnout 69.64%
   
CRITICAL DATES
Dissolution of House Wed, 29 Aug 2002
Polling Day Mon, 7 Oct 2002
First Meeting of Parliament Thu, 17 Oct 2002
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
PARTY MANIFESTOS View all Members of Parliament of Barbados
Download
UNC 2002 Manifesto
   
SUMMARY RESULTS
  Party Code Votes Candidates Seats
Total % votes Change Number Change
  People's National Movement Winner PNM 308,762 50.89% +4.38% 36 20 +2
  United National Congress UNC 284,391 46.87% -3.03% 34 16 -2
  National Alliance for Reconstruction NAR 6,776 1.12% +0.07% 2 0 -
  Citizens' Alliance CA 5,983 0.99% +0.99% 17 0 -
  Democratic Party of Trinidad and Tobago DPTT 662 0.11% +0.11% 10 0 -
  Independent Candidates IND 193 0.03% +0.03% 2 0 -
  Total   606,767 100% - 101 36 -
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 POLITICAL PARTIES learn more
PNM - People's National Movement
PP - People's Partnership
ILP - Independent Labour Party
 PARTY MANIFESTOS learn more
Download PNM 2015 Manifesto
Download PP 2015 Manifesto
Download ILP 2015 Manifesto
Download NNV 2015 Manifesto
Download TF 2015 Manifesto
Download THC 2015 Manifesto
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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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