Former NTV news anchor Larry Madowo on Tuesday hit out at Kenya Film Classification Board Chairman Ezekiel Mutua over the banned lesbian movie 'Rafiki'.
Madowo described Mutua as 'hopelessly conceited' for claiming the movie is incompatible with Kenyan values.
"Rafiki, a lesbian love story directed by Wanuri Kahiu, was the first Kenyan film to be selected to screen at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival. This is no small feat for a low-budget, independent movie.
"But instead of being celebrated here in Kenya, the film has been banned because of its homosexual theme and clear intent to promote lesbianism in Kenya contrary to the law.
[caption caption="Ezekiel Mutua"][/caption]
"The idea that homosexuality is a product that can be promoted by a film is not only laughable, but it reveals the backward mindset of those who make the rules in Kenya," he wrote.
Madowo further added that such rules would end up hurting Kenya's chances of being part of legendary productions since top players in the movie industry will avoid the country in the future.
"Homophobia is not the only dangerous thing in Kenya. These reactions to a changing society are hurting Kenya’s fledgeling creative industry. Big-budget productions with Kenyan storylines are now regularly shot out of the country because of restrictive taxes that make the country unattractive to international filmmakers.
"Imported camera and sound-recording equipment are prohibitively expensive because of the extra duty charges added by the government.
"If a filmmaker jump through the hoops to produce a movie in Kenya, his or her script still has to be approved by the Film Classification Board — which may deny a permit if it deems any part of the script to be offensive," he remarked.
The former news anchor urged the government to be more accommodative and appreciate local talent and provide more room for growth.
[caption caption="Stars of the Rafiki Movie"][/caption]
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