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Elections, The Aftermath And The Celebrity Truck

THULAGANYO JANKIE
You are only insignificant twice in your life- before election campaigns and after election results. Your stock picks significantly during election campaigns.

For some of us who get visits from deputy sheriffs waving court orders in our faces, water utilities metre readers and strange Egyptians peddling their expensive wares that could be procured at the Plaza in Block 3 industrial for less than half the price we have our hands full trying to ward of politicians and their politricking. 

Our rickety doors are in serious danger of caving in due to the incessant knocking. It also makes it very difficult to filter your visitors and you might find yourself face to face with a debt-collector you have been trying to avoid.

We got visits from very eminent persons including that MP who last visited during the last election campaign and promised to be in touch with but disappeared soon after.

This is the only time we were visited by all types of presidents- the president of the republic, presidents of all political parties, presidents of all youth leagues and some other strange ‘animals’.

Political rallies formed an integral part of the last campaign as usual. This is the ultimate stage. Here they spewed bile and rhetoric in equal measure. Sadly, politicians have fans- lots of them.

People who - a frightening thought - actually listen to what they have to say.  And most have very little to say but the gullible followers lapped it up without question.

Supporters of politicians are extremely peppy people, prone to applauding wildly at the slightest provocation. I found myself in a group that applauded when our favourite said ‘move back’ to a group of unruly converts.

The philosophy is: when an idiot is your idiot you can at least pretend what they are saying at a freedom square makes sense. Then their adversaries responded to gibberish with even more gibberish which is not the action of intelligent persons.

I love politicians. When they are campaigning they are all manner of Superman. Somehow, they can build that mega-bridge even though it is not in the National Development Plan.

Somehow they can tar that dusty road that courses through the village even though it is not in the National Development Plan.

The campaign teams tried to sell us people they had very little knowledge of pretending that they were the best thing to happen to this country since the spaghetti junction.

But in our world nothing could beat the spaghetti junction. We were, however, not brave enough to say this and when they left this became a huge cause of arguments in many homes.

We then had to make

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a decision on who to vote for. Most of us were as confused as a homeless man on house arrest. Some based their voting choices on the quality of the t-shirts, some on the frequency of visits, some on familiarity with the candidate.

There was a small section that tried to base their votes on what is written in the party manifesto. The latter were seen as the weird types.

I mean who has time to read huge volumes littered with garrulous terms when the election party and launches are around the corner of your street.

By the time the elections came to an end most of us had a stash of multicoloured t-shirts and matching caps. The tricky part with this political paraphernalia is that you can only use one set- that of your party- and the rest of the freebies have to be given away.

However, you can’t give it to your rivals even if it’s their party colours because in your mind you do not want the other party to get more exposure through the human billboards.

So you nicely pack them away and wait until you go to the farm and pretend you have bought your herdmen some goodies. In other cases they are immediately converted to sleepshirts.

We then went to the voting station and voted in people who will hopefully push our agenda but alas in some cases - many cases - we really have traded that vote for a t-shirt. A very poor return on investment!

And of course we had the celebrity truck that came all the way from Gantsi  to top up the election drama. If it is an election and there’s no drama then it is not an election.

This famous truck drove all the way from Gantsi with an escort much larger than an MPs escort. Police cars, politicians, police cars, more politicians, more cars and hangers-on. 

Of course the last bit is a figment of my very fertile imagination and a huge reliance on information from unreliable Facebook sources.

This truck somehow ended up in front of a high court and in that time converted a load of water melons into ballot boxes. This is a story for another day though.

Cecil Rhodes once famously declared ‘I would annex the planets’ but surprised everyone by coursing towards Matebeleland to satiate his cosmic journey.

Just like the much-loathed imperialist this is exactly what you get from politicians. After some 5 years the process is repeated. Alas!



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