The woman at the tomato stall was more concerned about the tomatoes on her stall than what the voice coming through the small radio next to the stall. The radio presenter kept going back and forth about the election. He flipped from one constitutional article to another so smooth like the red skins on the tomatoes stacked up on each other. The monotonous voice kept coming through the radio and stopped when the presenter announced a commercial break to which she hissed can’t they just talk about something else that actually happened before asking me how many tomatoes I wanted.
As she packed them in a polythene bag she hissed, election all they did was invite us to see whom they had chosen. Me whom you see here voted at 3:00 pm, do you think a vote cast at that time would make any change to the outcome, of course no. Never, and the reason it wouldn’t count is because I am not one of them to which I asked who? The one ones who want to evict me from working from here dont be a fool boy before she sat down with a body language that screamed go away.
I moved away quietly and called out a boda boda man who on the way was silent but kept his head fixed on the row of buildings we were driving through. He kept looking at the buildings one after another they rose in their splendour and glory. One was covered in glass, the next had turns that were endless and blended into the sky line. Those that didn’t rise above the ground spread across it with wall fences covered in lights that looked like they were more for decoration than security.
Who puts up such buildings so you can vote him out he asked me. They should just tell us every position is available but not the presidency. The owner of the building will vote president, the workers too and so will the people who will do business in there while the rest of us scrap at the entrance to carry them to their next destination. These people are playing with our intelligence; the election was simply an excuse for the president to shake off people in his government without needing to fire them.
The street was completely vacated and with one hand he asked me how many policemen have you counted since you sat on my motorcycle. Just as I was pondering the answer he said, Look at the number of police on the street I can go on for ever trying to count them. They number more than vendors on the street and are more common place than shoppers in the shops. I alighted off the boda boda and snaked my way home back to my small house off the out skirts of town. As i flipped my wallet to pay him he commented that was not an election but an extended holiday for government workers who specialise in doing nothing.
As I walked home, silence was in the air even the dogs weren’t barking actually they haven’t been barking for the last three days. Shops close early and many don’t open without a notice on the door to tell us why. This not my first time voting but with all the numbers it’s hard to understand what makes this election more special than the others that leaves everyone with a sense of disappointment hanging over there head.