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Rest in Peace Steve Kanumba

Rest in Peace Steve Kanumba

We have received the death of Steve Kanumba with shock and consternation.

Steve has been a constant visitor at ZIFF, a keen supporter and has won Awards at ZIFF both in 2010 and 2011.

Regional cinema in various international territories

There is a great deal of cinema made for a very large world audience but which is very ‘local’ (never leaves its territory but is widely viewed ONLY in home turf.  This happens in India (Bollywood) which makes hundreds of films each year that never leave not only the national territory but that literally never leave its locality and is often in a local language only people in that (relatively small) region can understand and they are the only ones that watch it.  This strictly local audience can be in the thousands or even millions. The territories also include African countries (Nigeria – Nollywood) or regions and also parts of China and Latin America e.g., Cuba). 

Steve Kanumba was the most famous of all Tanzania film stars of the Bongo Movies. His is a household name loved and cherished by millions in Tanzania but even many more millions in Burundi, DRC Congo, Rwanda, Zambia, Kenya, Uganda and Nigeria. But what distinguished him from the rest was his affable and amiable character. His reputation and character went in tandem and those of us who knew him were amazed by his liveliness, humours, creativity and filial love. He made and starred in not less than 100 films over the last 10 years. We join all others in mourning this creative son of Africa.

A poem for you my dear friend Steven.


Ulikuwa mtu mbele ya watu, ukajivika tabasamu cheko na bashasha,
Ulikuwa wa mwanzo na jemadari, kuona mbele na safari kuongoza,
Ulikuwa wa mwisho kununa, ulipokisimangwa kwa kero na ujuvi,
Wewe ulishika panga, ukaingia mwituni na njia kutupasulia!

Eh jiti kuu la mwituni, ndege wema na wabaya watamiapo,
Eh mzizi ulotambaa, ukagusa nyika na bahari kwa pamoja,
Eh mbuyu wa thamani, dawa poa na sumu kali zote zipo,
Eh wimbo wa pozeo, jua la kuchea na na mwezi wa kuchwea.

Nikwambe nini jabali, ulobeba tasnia,
Nikusifuje kwa hili, mbinguni wakasikia,
Leo dunia hulali, Pepo yakutazamia,
Ugone mpheho Steven, Umbudo nakukumbuka.

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