News

Documentary: Malawi's Joyce Banda in 'Madam President'

Short documentary on African president Joyce Banda's challenges to transform Malawi in just two years before the 2014 election.


Filmmakers Nick Francis and Marc Francis present "Madam President" a Speakit Films Production. The short film follows Malawi's first female president, Joyce Banda. Assuming office as President after the sudden death of  President Bingu wa Mutharika, Joyce Banda has just two years to convince Malawians to support her efforts to transform Malawi. As the film commences Banda expresses her trepidation of the work she has ahead:  It's heavy on me because my fear is that we've wasted fifty years. There's been little progress of changing the status of people at grassroots. It's heavy, but I'm able to carry it. Why? Because I'm an African woman and that is how we are trained. To carry heavy loads. We are brought up that nothing is unbearable."

Produced in association with The Guardian and supported by WorldView, the documentary situates itself as an introduction to Joyce Banda, outlining the challenges she faces and in some ways ends where it starts. Particularly interesting moments of the film feature Banda's preference for working with the Chinese, who make deals happen in the now- as opposed to Western countries with long lists of demands making it difficult to comply without delay. Check out the documentary below to get an insight on Malawi's first female president as she prepares to show her country that she's the woman for the job.

[embed width="620"][/embed]

Interview
Photo: Lex Ash (@thelexash). Courtesy of Simi.

Interview: Simi Is Taking Risks

Nigerian star Simi talks about the successes & risks of this year, her thoughts on the #EndSARS protests, and how her husband, Adekunle Gold, inspired Restless II.

Simi is restless. It has nothing to do with the year she has had, in fact, she reaffirmed her status as one of Nigeria's most successful musicians with a single music drop, "Duduke," which enjoyed widespread appeal as the nation went into lockdown earlier in the year.

The 32-year-old singer's restlessness is a reflection of the organised chaos that has defined her recording process this year as she combined the rigours of being an expectant mother with an examination of her place in the wider world. It, more accurately, reflects her re-negotiation of the parameters of her stardom.

"I've never really been a big fan of the spotlight," she whispers silently early in our Zoom conversation. "I know that it comes with the territory, but when I got my big break and more people started to recognise me, I realised that I had to edit myself, my life, and most of the things that I'd do or say because I wanted to be careful to keep a part of me for myself."

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

popular.

These Poignant #EndSARS Protest Photos Show the Heart of a United People

Documentary photographer Victor Adewale captures poignant moments in the continued #EndSARS protests in Nigeria which are calling for an end to police brutality.