Dr Ezekiel Mutua has been at loggerheads with Kenya’s online community for a while now. The Kenya Film Classification Board (KFCB) CEO has more than once been on the receiving end of criticism after he took stands that would easily wear the #UnpopularOpinion tag.
A few months ago, KFCB placed a ban on Kenya’s Rafiki film over what it termed promotion of homosexuality in the country. Despite the local ban, the film received global recognition and was even up for nomination to the Oscars under the Best Foreign Language Film category.
Following the news that Rafiki was up for an Oscar nomination, the Kenyan High Court temporarily lifted KFCB’s ban up until 30 September. The lift was to allow the show to be nominated and a section of Kenyans were pleased by this lift, terming it a win for “freedom”.
Unfortunately, Rafiki did not make the cut and Kenya’s Supa Modo was nominated under this category. This is where the self-proclaimed moral police started firing shots.
“Wanuri [the brainchild behind Rafiki] and the Creative Economy Working Group took us to court and misled the court to obtain frivolous orders without disclosing that this film wasn’t the only one to be considered for nomination to the Oscars,” said Dr Ezekiel Mutua, “They made it look like it had to be nominated and even went further to paint KFCB as the oppressor,” he added.
The KFCB CEO went further to claim that Wanuri Kahiu, Rafiki’s director was using the ban on her film to get donor support. “Wanuri has played victim to get donor support and she is being used by the LGBTQ as a pawn in a strange game of homosexual chess to ruin the reputation of the Board and the Government of Kenya in general,” read Ezekiel’s tweet.
Dr Ezekiel went even further to ask whether the media will give Supa Modo, the film that bagged the Oscar nomination, the same attention they gave to Rafiki, “Now that RAFIKI has failed to qualify for nomination to the Oscars will the civil society still give free tickets for people to go watch it? Will the media cover the nomination of SUPA MODO the way they were covering RAFIKI?” said the obviously disgruntled CEO.
In his final blow, Ezekiel said, “While gay people have a right to dignity and should be treated as human beings deserving of respect, they should keep their gay practices to themselves and stop bringing it to the public sphere. KFCB will not succumb to the warped logic of gay people to allow content that undermines the institution of family.”