In Danama, Prime Minister Doolay stood alone at the podium to address the crowd after a humiliating defeat at the polls. As usual, he was suave and smartly dressed. He always looked in control. Now he spoke earnestly. “Don’t believe these numbers. By the morning, all will change.”
His followers cheered and danced a jig on the spot, waving flags. They shouted. “Doolay for President,” like a mantra. They believed if they carried on shouting long enough, it would come true.
He said, “It’s not what it looks like.”
More cheering from the crowd. He continued. “Those numbers will change by morning.”
They continued shouting and dancing until he put his hands up for silence.
A hush fell. Then they noticed the men dressed all in black, from balaclavas to boots toting AK47’s. They had silently surrounded the area. Their guns trained not on anyone trying to enter the arena but on the crowd itself. He heard hushed whispers from a few in the crowd as they experienced a frisson of fear. “Who are these people? What are they doing?”
The prime minister ignored them and spoke again. “How many of you voted in this election?”
They swivelled their heads towards the podium, forgetting the gunmen. They raised their hands and shouted their mantra again.
The silence was deafening as Doolay stepped from the podium, walking round the tangled mass of dead and dying bodies. To his henchmen, he said, “Cover them and make the announcement I have won a landslide victory.”
© Felicity Edwards