Romancing the Abject Voter

It is here with us again, another election year, when every other business seems to be secondary but for the elections. Political trickery and heated exchanges have become the common nuances of the day. The posters are back on the walls waiting to litter the gutters and communities when their companions ditch them after December 7. The pantomime dresses for different political figures will begin to feature as an important part of our costumes. Catchy slogans and phrases for different parties in an attempt to condition minds of the people of Ghana to vote for them.


At the core of all this is him, he, who will decide the outcome of an elections. He has decided who gets the nod to rule a country and in fact the world since Athenian democracy. In Ghana, he has been at the realm of affairs employing individuals he deemed competent, had integrity and embodied the overall values he upholds at historic times: 1996, 2000, 2004 and 2008. He hasn’t always been happy with the choices he made but he knows this democratic experiment, in which he is allowing parties to compete ideas and policies will pay off in few decades to come. It was only in 1957 the white man left his shores leaving a fragile democracy created for his own expedience. So to some extent the colonial legacy should allow some room for excuses for mistakes as he tries to identify his place in the global circus.  He has most time been required to walk without crawling. It is a shame he finds himself in a world where others seem too far ahead but He has never been lost of hope.

He, the abject voter, is the centre of attention now.  They will come knocking at His door in their quest to source his vote to legitimise their stay in power. Different political figures who haven’t grinned at him since the last time he voted for them will smile broadly at him; they will embrace him instead of shaking hands; they will dine with him under his rickety building; they will show up at his funeral to share in his grievances. As happens always after he has given these parties what they want they duck into the bushes and that is it until another four years. At the back of His mind he knows they are and will be in different social classes after the elections. They become these sudden superstar presidential monarchs and he will still remain this impoverish man who struggles to provide a meal a day  for  family .They seldom pop up just to create the impression that he is still at the fore of their thoughts. He now feels he has only been reduced to hearthstone used for cooking but of no use until one gets hungry again.

The abject voter sometimes gets   worried about some of his compatriots who get wooed by this false romance of promises of better life. They get swayed and therefore allow themselves to be turned against each other. He tells his compatriots he has known enough of the cliché of promises of these parties to realise that them and only themselves can change their destinies. They promise schools but not even a crèche, toilets not even a urinary, and libraries not even a single book. In reality he is not a mere voter, he is a citizen and a bona fide stakeholder of his country, but that is what he has time and again been reduced to. He may seem like a drop but he fills the ocean. He admonishes his compatriots not to trade their long cherished peace for the selfishness of the few.

He says he’d rather stay awake when he is asleep ‘cause everything is never as it seems



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