Kamla Persad-Bissessar

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The Honourable
Kamla Persad-Bissessar
SC MP
Kamla Persad-Bissesar 2013.jpg
7th Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago
Incumbent
Assumed office
26 May 2010
President George Maxwell Richards
Anthony Carmona
Preceded by Patrick Manning
Member of the Parliament of Trinidad and Tobago for Siparia
Incumbent
Assumed office
6 November 1995
Preceded by Sahid Hosein
Political Leader
United National Congress
Incumbent
Assumed office
24 January 2010
Preceded by Basdeo Panday
7th Chairperson-in-office of the Commonwealth of Nations
In office
26 May 2010 – 28 October 2011
Head Elizabeth II
Preceded by Patrick Manning
Succeeded by Julia Gillard
Leader of the Opposition
In office
25 February 2010 – 25 May 2010
Preceded by Basdeo Panday
Succeeded by Keith Rowley
In office
26 April 2006 – 8 November 2007
Preceded by Basdeo Panday
Succeeded by Basdeo Panday
Attorney General of Trinidad and Tobago
In office
5 October 2001 – 24 December 2001
Prime Minister Basdeo Panday
Preceded by Ramesh Maharaj
Succeeded by Glenda Morean
In office
27 November 1995 – 2 February 1996
Preceded by Keith Sobion
Succeeded by Ramesh Maharaj
Minister of Education
In office
22 October 1999 – 4 October 2001
Preceded by Adesh Nanan
Succeeded by Ganga Singh
Personal details
Born (1952-04-22) 22 April 1952 (age 61)
Penal, Trinidad and Tobago
Political party United National Congress
Other political
affiliations
People's Partnership
Spouse(s) Gregory Bissessar
Alma mater University of the West Indies
Religion Christian Baptist & Hinduism
Website Official website

Kamla Persad-Bissessar SC, MP (born 22 April 1952 in Siparia[1]) is the seventh Prime Minister of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, the sixth person to hold this position. Inaugurated on 26 May 2010, she is the country's first female Prime Minister.[2]

Persad-Bissessar is the political leader of the United National Congress and leads the People's Partnership, a coalition of four parties, formed for the general election of 24 May 2010. She was the first woman to serve as Attorney General, acting Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition of Trinidad and Tobago. She became Political Leader of the United National Congress and Opposition in 2010.[3]

Education and early career[edit]

Kamla Persad-Bissessar attended the University of the West Indies, Norwood Technical College (England), and the Hugh Wooding Law School. She was awarded a B.A. (Hons.), a Diploma in Education, a B.A. of Laws (Hons.) and a Legal Education Certificate. In 2006 she obtained an Executive Masters in Business Administration (EMBA) from the Arthur Lok Jack Graduate School of Business, Trinidad.[4]

Political career[edit]

Persad-Bissessar has served as Member of Parliament for the Siparia constituency since 1995. She served as Attorney General in 1995 until Ramesh Maharaj was able to disassociate himself from ongoing cases and again in 2001 after Maharaj left the party. When the United National Congress formed Government on 22 December 2000, she was sworn in as the Minister of Education.

On 25 April 2006 she received the support of the majority of Opposition MPs for the post of Leader of the Opposition.[5] The position of Leader of the Opposition was declared vacant by President George Maxwell Richards[6] after Basdeo Panday was convicted of failing to make an accurate declaration to the Integrity Commission concerning a bank account held in London.[7] His Appeal is pending. Persad-Bissessar was subsequently appointed Leader of the Opposition on 26 April 2006.

Political leader[edit]

On 24 January 2010, Kamla Persad-Bissessar was elected Political Leader of the United National Congress, emerging victorious over the party's founder, Mr. Basdeo Panday. She was formally appointed Opposition Leader on 25 February 2010, having gained the support of a majority of UNC MPs.

Prime Minister[edit]

Persad-Bissessar took office after the victory of the People's Partnership in the general election of 24 May 2010 defeating the incumbent government of the People's National Movement, who had called an early election. She was the first female Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago and is also the first female Commonwealth Chairperson-in-Office. She was succeeded as Chairperson-in-Office by Julia Gillard with the opening of the 2011 CHOGM on 28 October 2011.

Personal life[edit]

Persad-Bissessar is married to Dr. Gregory Bissessar and has one son.[8][citation needed] She says, "I am baptised in the Baptist faith. I have no specific church as such. I am of both the Hindu and the Baptist faiths."[9]

In August 2011, government officials confirmed that Persad-Bissessar had been stricken with dengue fever, and would carry out duties of the State under medical supervision.[10]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Sookraj, Radhica (26 May 2010). "Kamla came from humble beginnings". Trinidad and Tobago Guardian. Retrieved 27 May 2010. 
  2. ^ ttgapers.com 2010. PNM lose to Peoples Partnership in Trinidad elections 2010. ttgapers.com 24 May 2010.
  3. ^ Staff writer (25 May 2010). "WOMAN POWER: Kamla creates history in TT". Caribbean News Agency (CANA). Retrieved 26 May 2010. 
  4. ^ http://www.ttparliament.org/members.php?mid=54&id=KPB01
  5. ^ Lord, Richard. 2006. Leader Kamla: President's move forces UNC crisis decision. Trinidad Express 26 April 2006.
  6. ^ Lawyers criticise Max for declaring vacancy Trinidad Express 26 April 2006.
  7. ^ Cummings, Stephen (2006-01-16). "Trinidad's opposition leader set to go on trial". Caribbean Net News. Retrieved 2007-02-19. 
  8. ^ House of Representatives: Parliament of Trinidad and Tobago. Ttparliament.org. Retrieved on 2012-04-26.
  9. ^ Meet T and T PM, Kamla NationNews Barbados, June 2010.
  10. ^ Brathwaite, Abby. (2011-08-16) DENGUE STRIKES KAMLA | Trinidad Express Newspaper | News. Trinidadexpress.com. Retrieved on 2012-04-26.

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Basdeo Panday
Leader of the Opposition
2006–2007
Succeeded by
Basdeo Panday
Leader of the Opposition
2010
Succeeded by
Keith Rowley
Preceded by
Patrick Manning
Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago
2010–present
Incumbent
Party political offices
Preceded by
Basdeo Panday
Political Leader
United National Congress

2010–present
Incumbent
Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Patrick Manning
Commonwealth Chairperson-in-Office
2010–2011
Succeeded by
Julia Gillard