The United National Congress (UNC) is a political party in Trinidad and Tobago that was formed on December 30, 1989, through the merger of two other political parties, the National Alliance for Reconstruction (NAR) and the United Labour Front (ULF). The merger was seen as a significant development in Trinidadian politics as it represented a more unified and cohesive force than either of its predecessors.
The UNC made its debut in the 1991 general elections but was defeated by the ruling People’s National Movement (PNM). However, in the 1995 general elections, the UNC won a majority of seats in the House of Representatives, and its leader, Basdeo Panday, became the country’s first Indo-Trinidadian prime minister.
Under Panday’s leadership, the UNC implemented a number of progressive policies, such as free education up to tertiary level, and expanded healthcare and housing initiatives. Panday was re-elected in 2000, but the UNC lost power in 2001 to the PNM.
Despite these setbacks, the UNC remained a major force in Trinidadian politics, and in the 2010 general elections, the party won a huge victory and formed a coalition government with the Congress of the People (COP).
Under Kamla Persad-Bissessar’s leadership, the UNC government continued to implement progressive policies, such as a national health insurance program and increased funding for education and infrastructure.
Since then, the UNC has been in opposition and has undergone a period of introspection and reform. The party has continued to advocate for progressive policies, such as increased funding for education and healthcare, and has remained a key player in Trinidadian politics.
The current leader of the UNC is Kamla Persad-Bissessar, who served as prime minister from 2010 to 2015. The party remains a major force in Trinidadian politics and continues to attract support from a diverse range of constituencies.