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Merafong Documentary Film Festival

It will also promote entrepreneurship.

Merafong is hosting a documentary film festival in June. The area remains the bedrock of South Africa’s thriving economy.

According to the filmmaker Khatlhiso Tjobolo, the region boasts excessive mineshafts extracting valuable metals from the earth. Sadly, however, it remains disproportionately under-resourced, and the mineral wealth’s economic benefits seemingly go elsewhere.

“Throughout the poverty-stricken townships that supply labour to the mines, youth unemployment has bred a new vulnerability to crime.

“We need interventions to develop self-aware individuals to lead the region from its infamy,” he says. The filmmaker said the youth, creatives, artists and craft makers rejuvenate a vision of a new future through initiatives like The Merafong Documentary Film Festival. The platform promotes township entrepreneurship through arts and again takes centre stage.

This Youth Month, EXT Lab Media proudly collaborates with the Gauteng Film Commission to bring another series of documentary film screenings to Merafong communities. The Merafong Documentary Film Festival celebrates South African historical diversity through documentary film. The filmmaker says that from the beginning of June to the end of Mandela Month, EXT Lab Media will screen films delving into the heart of contemporary South African politics, probing the history of the mining industry and analysing how algorithms have created social biases that affect life beyond the computer.

Merafong’s municipal area will be abuzz with activities during Youth Month. The first instalment of the festival takes place at Thuto-Kitso Comprehensive High School, followed by Imfundo Secondary School in Kokosi. EXT Lab Media will further screen a selection of South African and international documentaries in Khutsong and Wedela. Filmmakers will present these documentary screenings.

They will facilitate discussion on issues raised in their films while engaging communities towards using art as a tool for questioning social norms. As the films ask poignant questions about the current state of our democracy, a new generation of involved citizens must equip themselves with some knowledge embodied in the films selected for the festival.

Send any queries about the screening to Paul Zisiwe at tjobolo.khahliso@gmail.com or Catherine Mthembu at Rorisang.mthembu@gmail.com. Altern

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