#WTF: These Zim Filmmakers have been Arrested Over a Film That Upsets Foreign Powers
In this week’s WTF moment we’ve just found out that Arterial Network Chairperson and Director of Theatre in the Park Harare Daves Guzha was arrested on Saturday night sans actual charges.
The pre-premier screening of a new film “The Lord of Kush” by Tendai Maduwa and Kudakwashe Bwititi which was supposedly uncleared by the censorship board.
On Sunday after their interrogation at Harare Central CID Law and Order, the filmmakers Tendai Maduwa, Kudakwashe Bwititi and TITP managers Peter Churu, Daves Guzha were formally charged with ´´unlawful public exhibition of a film’’; an act which the authorities claimed contravened Section 9(1)(a) of Zimbabwe’s Censorship and Entertainment Control Act, Chapter 10:04.
The film in question follows Patrice, a mother to Zimbabwe’s ambassador to Pakistan and a retired professor with time on her hands. In an overzealous manner, she antagonizes the Islamic community around her by imposing Christianity on Muslim children. The consequences of her brash actions, see her only grandchild kidnapped, and thousands of school children massacred by a shadowy rebel group. At the centre of all the carnage is Rashid, the Lord of Kush, a calculating and merciless character.
The film, which a source close to the production team says is incomplete, has clearly ruffled feathers further up the food chain; confirmed by the Permanent Secretary for the ZImbabwe’s Ministry of Information.
My understanding is that this is a play that had not been cleared by the Censorship and Entert Board. I am informed the play has security implications for a foreign power and the Censorship did not approve it. They proceeded to feature the play in the Harare Gardens regardless
— Nick Mangwana (@nickmangwana) July 29, 2019
As if the reference to ‘Foreign Powers’ wasn’t creepy enough.
The idea that creatives can be carried off and charged for creating work true to their self-expression is unsettling, the fact that foreign power discomfort can be placed over and above a Zimbabwean’s freedom is all the more terrifying.
As we write this, Tendai Maduwa, Kudakwashe Bwititi and TITP managers Peter Churu, Daves Guzha are in court.