Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar last night extended congratulations to US President Barack Obama winning a second term, saying he has earned his re-election.
“He earned his re-election, he remained grounded in politics of hope and delivery to the people. Congrats President Obama,” stated Persad-Bissessar in a text response to the Express.
“Obama lives on!” Persad-Bissessar added.
Asked whether there were any lessons to be learnt from the US presidential elections, she responded: “Stay focussed on delivery to the people.”
Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Dookeran told the Express that Obama’s victory sent the message that race was no longer an issue in America.
“I think it is a great victory for America that he has been able to build a coalition based on the diversity of America, he has been able to win confidence in the continuity of his policies and that the American population recognised that it takes time for economic change to take place,” said Dookeran.
Dookeran said it was also indicative of Obama’s global multi-lateral policy to build a different world order.
“I hope we can learn some lessons from the American citizens’ response to the politics of their country,” said Dookeran.
Also commenting on Obama’s win was Government Minister Dr Roodal Moonilal:
“It appears now that the President has been returned to office for another four years so I’d like to extend congratulations to the American people for participating in another major test of their democracy. They have a very rich tradition of democratic participation and the election was gruelling yet it captured all the hallmarks of a modern democracy including the good, the bad and the ugly,” said Moonilal.
He said one expects that in Obama’s second administration there will be focus on addressing major national concerns of debt management and job creation.
“I think there are several lessons for us in Trinidad and Tobago to learn from the American presidential campaign for us as a Government- that is to keep strong, focus on achievement, delivery, fulfilling promises and communicating the good work on a continuous basis to the electorate,” said Moonilal.
He also noted that Obama’s victory the second time around was not as convincing as the first.
“So there is a lot we can learn....we keep a laser-like focus on the real issues that affect ordinary citizens of Trinidad and Tobago and don’t be distracted by the politicisation of populist issues and our critics who would like to undermine our record of achievement,” said Moonilal.