You could go to prison for something as petty as stealing a neighbour's chicken. It is a reality that a lot of us have to contend with. That coupled with having a poor or lack thereof of good representation.
Zimbabwean producer Malaika Mushandu captured this in her award-winning film Mirage. The lead character in the film Tambu was sentenced to five years after she stole a chicken. This event changed the course of her life and that of her daughter.
The film does a good job of showing the viewer what life is like for women in prison. It also shows the impact of the miscarriage of justice. What happens to children left behind after their primary caregivers go behind bars?
This was Malaika’s directional debut and she’s already scooped a number of awards for it. Here’s what stood out for her.
“What stood out for me is that prison is literally one “decision” or small mistake away. In some instances, it's cases of not having a competent lawyer for false accusations or minor issues such as stealing livestock, not out of greed, but for basic sustenance.”
To learn more about Malaika Mushandu’s work, here’s the full interview she granted YAZA Kenya.