3 March 2007

Zimbabwe: Mufakose Pornographic Queen Exposed

Harare — A pornographic movie featuring two Zimbabweans that was shot in Mufakose by a South African man last December is circulating in Harare and other towns.

The 66-minute movie, titled "Dread", was filmed in one room and shows a woman and man smoking mbanje and drinking opaque beer, popularly known as Scud, before engaging in sexual acts on a reed mat.

It is believed that an outfit known as Barakas Entertainment, operating from the Avenues area in Harare, produced the movie, which is available for hire from a number of unlicenced home-operated video clubs in Harare, Chitungwiza and Norton.

Contacted by The Herald this week, the woman featured in the blue movie, who gave her name as Barbara, admitted taking part in the film, saying she had been induced by the promise of R8 000 but she only got Z$80 000.

She said the South African man, who has since disappeared, had given her strong assurance that the movie would be shown outside the country but to her surprise, it became available locally a week after it was shot.

The simple-looking and rather shy woman, who appears uncomfortable in the movie, said the South African man approached her and asked her to "act" in the movie last December.

"He promised me R8 000 and that the movie would be sold abroad where I was not known," she said.

She said the man drove her to Mufakose, to meet a dreadlocked man by the name of Brian, whom she knew from Kuwadzana as her live-in boyfriend's friend.

"In Mufakose, the man 'introduced' me to Brian, who also vowed not to disclose the news to my boyfriend. We spent four hours shooting that movie," she said.

Asked whether she could lead The Herald team to the Mufakose house, Barbara said she had no idea at all of its precise location because when she was taken there she never bothered to find out much about the neighbourhood.

"The man had told me beforehand not to draw people's attention. I suspect that either the place belonged to the man's friend or that he was leasing it.

"The man later gave us $80 000 each for lunch and said he would bring the R8 000 when his boss, whom he said was booked in a flat in town, had seen the movie. That was the last time I saw him.

"I learnt later that the movie was circulating in Kuwadzana. My boyfriend got hold of it and we fought over the matter."

She subsequently apologised and he accepted the apology.

"We are still together although he still has a copy of the movie and can have sudden outbursts of anger. If he sees you here, there could be a big fight," she said.

The Herald could not contact both Brian, who is believed to be lying low, and Barbara's boyfriend, who was described by neighbours as a somewhat unpredictable character.

The setting of the movie appears to be a lodger's room in a high-density suburb -- bare, unpainted, grimy walls, a dustcoat hanging on the door, two low chairs and a coffee table, some utensils in one corner and a kitchen unit.

The movie opens with Barbara and Brian seated on the chairs chatting and then smoking mbanje and drinking Scuds.

Barbara then undresses and poses for the camera before Brian joins her.

Harare provincial police spokesperson Assistant Inspector Memory Pamire yesterday said the police were not aware of the video but pointed out that the filming and distribution of pornographic material was a serious criminal offence.

"We are not aware of such activities, but we are now carrying out investigations. The public must report such activities to the police in time for the police to effect some arrests," she said.

Under the Censorship and Entertainment Control Act, it is an offence to exhibit in public, import, produce, disseminate, and possess undesirable or prohibited video and film material. The Act also prohibits the publication of pictures, statues as well as recording any form of obscene material for public entertainment.

The first highly publicised case of pornography in the country was in 1987 when about 300 women were pictured in the nude and the photographs were reportedly sold in Germany.

In the early 1990s, there was a shocking case of bestiality when an undisclosed number of women -- for the love of money -- were filmed in sex acts with a dog in Borrowdale, Harare.

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