Intwasa Arts Festival director summoned over Gukurahundi documentary

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By Bulawayo Correspondent

THE director of Intwasa Festival Raisdon Baya was on Wednesday summoned and questioned by police from the Law and Order section over journalist Zenzele Ndebele’s Gukurahundi documentary “Gukurahundi Genocide: 36 years later,” which is set to be premiered on Saturday at the on-going Intwasa Arts Festival.

Baya‘s questioning follows a similar police interrogation on Ndebele this week over the documentary.

The controversial production by Ndebele exhibits the cruel nature in which the Gukurahundi atrocities unfolded in the post-independence disturbances that have been widely condemned across the globe.

Baya said he was summoned to Bulawayo Central police station’s Law and Order section on Wednesday morning in connection with the journalist’s documentary.

“Police from the law and order section met me this morning. They told me that Ndebele’s documentary has not been cleared by the Censorship Board and therefore cannot be showcased at the Intwasa without the Board’s approval,” said Baya.

The Intwasa Director said in response he told the police that the Festival organisers were not responsible for the contents of the documentary.

“We made it clear that as organisers of the Intwasa, our role is only to give artistes a platform to showcase their works. The issue of Censorship Board clearance which they referred to is entirely between the Censorship Board and the artist concerned. As festival organisers we do not create content,” said Baya.

Ndebele was on Monday summoned and questioned by the police over the documentary.

The police demanded a copy of the documentary before its showcasing.

The police were claiming the documentary may contain inflammatory content that would incite violence in the country.

Another Gukurahundi play by Gwanda based Jahunda Community Artists (And 1983, The Dark Years will also be showcased at the festival which started on Tuesday.