Fallo! – La mia storia da reporter tra i bassifondi di Nairobi

Ho visto giornalisti non fare le cose per bene a Mathare. L’hanno falsificata. Così ho deciso di diventare reporter per colmare questa lacuna e seguire la mia passione.
Kenya, Eastern Africa

Story by Elijah Kanye. Translated by Giovanna Luisetto
Published on February 27, 2023.

This story is also available in GB ar cn de es fr kr tr



Non avevo paura mentre correvo incontro alla folla in direzione dell’hotel Nairobi dove ci fu l’attacco.[1] Fummo i primi reporter sulla scena: io, un altro cameraman, e un giornalista. All’inizio, non eravamo in grado di dire se si trattasse di un attacco terrorista o di una rapina. Vedevamo solo gente scappare dall’hotel, mentre noi correvamo proprio in quella direzione. Ma quando vedemmo due persone a terra, a cui avevano sparato, capimmo che si trattava di un attacco terrorista. L’hotel era grande e avevamo almeno bisogno di un muro alle spalle, per proteggerci dagli assalitori. Riguardando il materiale che avevo filmato, mi resi conto che la situazione era estremamente pericolosa, e probabilmente l’idea non così brillante. Non avevamo nulla che ci potesse proteggere. Ringraziai Dio per esserne usciti vivi. Altre persone si limitavano a filmare da lontano. Io andai lì e filmai la realtà.

Da giovane, sognavo di diventare un calciatore professionista. Come molti amici a Mathare[2], sognavo di giocare nei nostri club locali come Mathare United o Real Mathare. O ancora meglio, in club europei come Manchester United o Real Madrid. C’era solo un vero campo da calcio nel vicinato, il campo Mathare Depot. Lo gestivo con i miei amici; per anni fummo i migliori giocatori. Per svariate ragioni, alla gente questo non piaceva. Io lo amavo, e sognavo una vita come quella dei cartelloni della Coca-Cola in città: “Nutriti di calcio. Sogna il calcio. Bevi Coca-Cola.” Tuttavia, le cose andarono in modo diverso e dovetti cercare un altro scopo della mia esistenza.

Ho visto giornalisti non fare le cose per bene a Mathare. Ad esempio, quando scoppia una rissa da qualche parte giù nei bassifondi, ‘gli esterni’ pensano che sia troppo pericoloso andare lì a scoprire la ragione scatenante. Non la raccontano nel modo corretto. Quindi, 13 anni fa, decisi di diventare reporter per colmare questa lacuna. Visto che sono di Mathare, posso recarmi in quei luoghi e filmare esattamente ciò che accade. La gente mi conosce e si fida di me, fin dai tempi in cui giocavo a calcio da giovane. Alcuni mi conoscono come ‘Elijah il calciatore’ e altri come ‘Elijah il reporter’.

Filmare è la mia passione: mi sento personalmente motivato a condividere storie della mia società, la società di Mathare. Voglio mostrare la storia vera. Di solito, mostro storie positive, perché troppa negatività può dare alla testa. Tuttavia, punto ad essere sempre obiettivo ed onesto nei confronti del mio pubblico, perché fa affidamento su di me come reporter, come regista. Ad esempio, recentemente ho trattato argomenti seri come la violenza della polizia inerente al COVID-19 qui nei bassifondi. Con il mio documentario, ho mostrato la situazione di Mathare sul telegiornale olandese, sulla BBC, e su altri canali.[3]

Sogno un giorno di fare un documentario sulla storia della mia vita. Spero di motivare i giovani dei bassifondi affinché possano credere di avere le capacità di fare ciò che desiderano. Di vivere liberamente, fedeli a loro stessi. Lo meritano.


Note a piè di pagina

[1] https://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-africa-47202313 

[2] Mathare è un insieme di quartieri degradati a Nairobi, Kenya, ci vivono circa 500,000 persone.

[3] Clicca qui per il servizio trasmesso dal telegiornale olandese: https://nos.nl/video/2346202-elijah-filmt-het-politiegeweld-in-zijn-sloppenwijk.html, e qui per il servizio trasmesso dalla BBC: https://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-africa-53025934 

[4] Elijah supporta già la gente dei bassifondi con la sua iniziativa giovanile Sauti. I giovani sono seguiti per fare-pratica con le riprese, l’arte, e altre attitudini. Per diventare ciò che vogliono diventare. Clicca qui per Sauti: https://www.facebook.com/watch/TVSauti/ or https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IFlrToASX3c&t=5s&ab_channel=SautiTv


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Elijah Kanye

Elijah Kanye

My name is Elijah Kanyi, a Filmmaker/Producer and Director based in Nairobi, Kenya. Born and bred in Mathare slum, one of the oldest slums in East Africa. I have witnessed so much injustice over the years, which is what motivated me to become a Filmmaker. The career path I chose has given me an opportunity to tell the stories of my people, ranging from corruption, and inequality in health and education, resource distribution, police brutality & extrajudicial killings. Early in my life, I was determined to protect and project a voice for the people without a voice, and that's wat I do as a filmmaker. 

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