By Ogova Ondego
Published October 15, 2013
Other than for religion and politics, perhaps no other subject is as divisive as ‘donor aid’. Lectures have been delivered and books published on ‘development aid’ in an attempt to analyse and explain what happens to the colossal amounts of money sank into Africa in the form of â€˜development aidâ€™.
It is estimated that some US$600 Billion (about 463 Billion Euros or Sh51,000,000,000,000,000) has been poured in Africa over the past 50 years though there appears to be no end to this aid in the near future.
While prominentÂ â€œcelebsâ€ of the entertainment industry such as Bono, Bob Geldorf, Angelina Jolie and Madonna, continue to pressure western politicians to pump more development aid into Africa, an ever-increasing number of African development aid workers, historians, journalists, intellectuals, political activists, economic experts, and sociologists are beginning to criticise this flood of never-ending ‘aid’.
Why has ‘development aid’ not produced visible progress in Africaâ€™s development during the half century it has been pumped into the mother continent?
SÃ¼sses Gift (Sweet Poison), an 89-minute film by Peter Heller of Germany tries to respond to this Sh51,000,000,000,000,000 Question.
This documentary that looks at three western government-funded development aid projects in Kenya, Tanzania and Mali shall be shown and discussed during the 70th monthly Lola Kenya Screen film forum (LKSff) at Goethe-Institut in Nairobi on October 28, 2013 at 6.00PM. It is a ‘by-invitation only’ event.
According to Deutsche Welle, Heller has been making films over the past 40 years and he has made 30 films in Africa alone.
Sweet Poison comes to Nairobi after its African premiere in Kigali, Rwanda on October 25, 2013.
LKSff (lolakenyascreen.org/film-forum/), that prides herself in seeking, identifying and presenting new talents in film on the global platform, is often one of the first places where new films can be seen and new talent spotted.
LKSff is held every last Monday of the month throughout the year; it is part of the Lola Kenya Screen (lolakenyascreen.org) audiovisual media festival, skills-development programme and marketing platform for children and youth in the Great Lakes and Horn of Africa region.
The initiative of ComMattersKenya (commatterskenya.com) in conjunction with Goethe-Institut, LKSff is a specialised platform for practitioners in the eastern African audiovisual media sector.
LKSff (artmatters.info/links/lola-kenya-screen/), that was first held on December 15, 2005, is aimed at critiquing, encouraging and exploring ways of integrating film production in eastern Africa with other socio-cultural and economic sectors in order to create a vibrant and sustainable film industry.