Big win for ‘Rafiki’ as court lifts ban to give movie chance at the Oscars


Big win for 'Rafiki' as court lifts ban to give movie chance at the Oscars

In Summary

  • For Rafiki to be eligible for best foreign-language film Oscar consideration, it must be screened in Kenya before September 30.
  • Renowned filmmaker Wanuri Kahiu sued the Kenya government after the Kenya Film Classification Board (KFCB) banned the film citing that it promotes lesbianism contrary to the law.
  • Justice Wilfrida Okwany, in her ruling, said that she is not convinced that Kenya is a weak society whose morals will be weakened by watching the movie.

The High Court in Nairobi has suspended the ban on Rafiki film for seven days to allow the lesbian themed film a chance to qualify for the Oscars.

Justice Wilfrida Okwany, in her ruling, said that she is not convinced that Kenya is a weak society whose morals will be weakened by watching the movie.

While directing that the film be opened for viewing by adults only, the judge said that the movie cannot dictate the choice of an adult on whether to watch it or not.

Renowned filmmaker Wanuri Kahiu sued the Kenya government after the Kenya Film Classification Board (KFCB) banned the film citing that it promotes lesbianism contrary to the law.

For Rafiki to be eligible for best foreign-language film Oscar consideration, it must be screened in Kenya before September 30.

“The Board has restricted a local film titled ‘Rafiki’ produced by Awali Entertainment Ltd. Its homosexual theme and clear intent to promote lesbianism in Kenya is contrary to the law,” KFCB said.

On getting the news, Wanuri was overwhelmed by emotions tweeting; “I am crying. In a French airport. In SUCH Joy! Our constitution is STRONG! Give thanks to freedom of expression!!!! WE DID IT! We will be posting about Nairobi screening soon.”

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Story By Dzuya Walter
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