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Inclusive Lagos film festival highlights plight of urban poor

By Guardian Nigeria
22 December 2021   |   2:41 am
As part of an effort aimed at addressing issues of non-inclusion, the Inclusive Lagos Film Festival (ILFF) is changing the narrative by bringing young people from informal and poor communities

Inclusive Lagos Film Festival (ILFF)

As part of an effort aimed at addressing issues of non-inclusion, the Inclusive Lagos Film Festival (ILFF) is changing the narrative by bringing young people from informal and poor communities living in urban cities to tell their resilience stories.

Speaking during the public screening in Lagos last week, co-founder Rethinking Cities, Deji Akinpelu, said ILFF is a youth content short documentary festival created by Rethinking Cities with the support of Heinrich Boll Foundation.

He disclosed that over the past few years, they have been involved in production on the challenges faced by urban poor.
According to him, “we are putting together this socially conscious film festival that promotes equity in the society. It speaks to power to make the necessary change particularly as the 2023 general election draws nearer.”

Continuing, he said “it is a platform that we created for young people living in these poor communities to express their creativities and desires in terms of cities they would like to see. It is to create a voice for the voiceless. We are bringing it to the government that something needs to be done and those contesting for election should know that the voiceless have a platform.

Speaking further, he said it was important to reach out to more people and target a wider audience to pass the message across because the challenges remain the same.

He added that it was also important to begin conversations about policies in terms of inclusive housing, transportation and waste management.

He said this was the first edition, adding that another screening would take place again next year.

He disclosed that their expectations after the screening were to have the creative industry tell the story of urban poor dwellers and bring about the necessary change the inhabitants would like to see.

In his speech, Nollywood actor, Frank Konwea, stated that he was moved to tears watching the documentary. He said he would share his experience with his family. He, however, expressed concern over the government’s nonchalant attitude towards the plight of the urban poor.

Eight mini-documentaries were screened, including one that showed how residents of Otobo Gbame, a coastal community were forcefully evicted from their land.