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Umbagollah is divided into five provinces, and each province is overseen by a body of five people headed by a governor. Governors are voted into power by the Umbagollians who live in their home provinces. Since the invasion and conquest of Gum Gooloo Gum Jublet by the city of Ex, the country as a whole has been run by the Governor of Ex. The current Governor has thick, short hair and a pair of gold filigree glasses which spend each day creeping gradually down her nose. Her eyesight is slowly leaving her. Mentally, however, she is extremely acute.

Before she passes any decisions which will affect the entire country, she must first have the approval of the governors of the four other provinces. They are: the Governor of Gum Gooloo Gum Jublet (and ajoining areas); the governor of the North-Western Flatlands; the governor of Cumber Poidy; and the governor of the Falling Hills.

This last province is a sore point between Ex and Gum Gooloo. The Goolooians argue that the Falling Hills are too uninhabited to be an effective province, and that it ought to be absorbed into the province of Gum Gooloo. The Exians have refused this request several times with a variety of excuses: their private, unstated reason, is that they do not like to think of Gum Gooloo holding land directly adjacent to their southern borders. Goolooians jokingly refer to the governor of the Falling Hills as, "A civil servant of Ex" and "The manager of the invisible city."

A knobbly clublike thing Each governor is backed by a council of four advisors. Their titles are as follows:
The Minister of Earth.
The Minister of Thought, Poetry and Trees.
The Minister of Skies and Clouds.
The Minister for Silence.

None of these councillors is responsible for anything in particular. There is no Minister of War, for example. War is not worth ministering. Instead, each advisor is elected to represent a different thought process. The Minister of Earth is generally practical, the Minister of Skies and Clouds tends to be dreamy, the Minister of Poetry and Trees lies somewhere in the middle, and the Minister for Silence just sits there and stares at everybody to remind them that their decisions have consequences for hundreds of people who are not present to make their voices heard.

Councillors are permitted to influence the governor as powerfully as they like, but they cannot make major decisions on their own. In extreme cases a councillor may make a No Confidence motion against the governor and call for a new election. All Umbagollians are free to enter the council chambers at any time and engage in discussion with the Ministers and the Governor. Any citizen of Umbagollah is allowed to run for a position in the government. Most of them don't. Council positions don't carry any special privileges and in many ways the power they wield on paper is illusionary. There is no organised force backing them up. The theory is that they have been trusted by the people to come up with ideas which will better the country, and that this is all they are required to do: they are leader-scholars who disseminate wisdom.