How Much You Should Sell Your Vote For, Next Time.
Do you remember the door-to-door campaigns, manifesto, policy U-turn, political pledges, media campaigns and of course, election posters?
The latter…… the Posters.
The omnipresent and visually unavoidable. Items of affliction to the structures and landscape.
Covering traffic lights and electricity poles,
Dominating our line of vision…..Nationwide.
We marvel at the numbers that are erected suddenly
In just a single night, by the party devotees.
To outdo the opposition….
Blinding us with party logos, regardless of one’s interest in an election.
Airbrushed photos in quality prints
Found even in the most remote/secluded territories.
Even after being elected… Duly or Unduly, they remain obsessed with their own images.
Searching for the most prominent location to hang them up.
To impress and oppress the eyes of the electorate all over again
Reminding us of the Sovereign party
And the jobs they are working on……,
Even when it’s just patching up two potholes, when the president is about to visit.
Why isn’t the same energy used?
To synthesize covid 19 awareness?
To Distribute Trusted information to communities.
Make sure everyone gets it in any dialect they understand.
Same energy that delivers the pack of salt to every door step, regardless of the hurdles of getting there.
Use that same energy of positional dominance To feed into citizens unconscious minds daily.
That energy that Pretends for a minute that you care.
To continuously Distribute Free face masks to the marginalized population.
Use those flyers.
Use The bodies of BRTs, NSTAs, Public buses.
On the campaign wrappers and uniforms (asoebis, ankos)
On electrical billboards (the type endangers lives because they play football matches for motorists to watch while driving in Niger State)
Or billboards that hang from the overhead pedestrian bridges (the kind that a sitting Governor would use to announce the wedding of his daughter)
Or on the paper that binds the miraculous Out-of-Poverty 5000 naira fund.
This time it will only be three words….
Less ink, less graphics….
Mask! Wash! Distance!
Or three symbols for those that can’t read. Include texture, shapes, sounds for the blind
Finally bring those pledged boreholes to communities, public spaces, markets.
Free soaps to wash the hands that cast the votes. Or hands that sell theirs.
Where is that ‘same’ energy?
Well, you can airbrush your face on a poster
But you can’t airbrush your soul!
— The Butcher