|Stephane Tchakam, Charge de Communication Pan Africa ILGA|
The Tanzania Film Censorship Board of the Ministry of Information, Youth, Culture and Sports has barred the public showing of five local films, some being blamed for "promoting homosexuality, which in a criminal offence in Tanzania."
The Ministry of Information, Youth, Culture and Sports has barred public show of five local films, because they contravene with Tanzania's cultural norms of human decency.
A statement issued on Thursday by the Ministry said the Tanzania Film Censorship Board inspected 45 films last month and decided to expel public show of five films namely 'Mtoto wa Mama,' 'Inye', 'Inye Plus,' 'Inye Ndembendembe' and 'Inye Gwedegwede,' that are blamed for plunging the country into cultural and moral decay.
The statement further said that the board barred the films because they are against the values and insults women especially those with big figures, while others are being blamed for promoting homosexuality, which in a criminal offence in Tanzania.
"The ministry through the film board has decided to ban films that focus on explicit sex, obscenity and pornography which government consider immoral and a bad influence especially on the youth," reads part of the statement.
According to the ministry's statement 'Mtoto wa Mama' film encourages the youth to be gays.
"The 'Mtoto wa Mama' film is in grade 'R' which means that it is not supposed to be shown anywhere at any time in the country because the movie is gay themed and features the young boys actors in indecent dresses.
Moreover, the statement said, Inye, Inye Plus, Inye Ndembendembe and Inye Gwedegwede are in the same grade as they are comedy like movies, which insults women with huge figures, suggesting that their movements arouse sexual temptations.
The National Film Board has reminded every film producer to submit a written letter with the attachment of a film script to the ministry to be reviewed, so as to establish whether a film meets the requirement set before it is allowed to hit the market.
Meanwhile, the Ministry has approved changes made on suspended 'Shoga' film which will now be known as 'Shoga Yangu.' The film can now be watched by people above 18 years; however, the board has ordered the producer to ensure that the film cover match with the revised content.
The gay themed movie Shonga premiered in Tanzania in February.