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Namibian Premiere of “Sodiq” by Adeyemi Michael, on Wednesday, 13 August 2014, 18h30, at the FNCC

sodiq

AfricAvenir, in partnership with the Franco Namibian Cultural Centre (FNCC) presents the Namibian premiere of “Sodiq” by Adeyemi Michael, on Wednesday, 13. August 2014, 18h30, at the FNCC. The documentary “Sodiq” follows the lives Sodiq Adeojo who dreamed of becoming a doctor and Sylvester Akpalara, who had a promising career as an athlete ahead of him. Five years later (2012), Sodiq was convicted of murdering Sylvester and is now serving a 30-year jail sentence. How does a boy with the aspirations of becoming a doctor find himself on trial for murder...? A documentary by Adeyemi Michael

Sodiq Adeojo is a 20-year-old young man from Peckham who has been found guilty of the murder of Sylvester Akpalara, an 18-year- old from Streatham on the 29th December 2010. In 2004, Sodiq (aged 11) and Adeyemi (aged 19) set up a football team for kids on their housing estate ‘to give them a different type of gang to belong to’. It won the local league for two years in a row, was a huge success, and led to Adeyemi gaining work as a talent scout for Millwall FC. Adeyemi began making this documentary in 2008 when the team was about to end as he left to go to university. At the time Sodiq was about to take his GCSE’s and embark on an academic journey towards studying medicine and becoming a doctor. In less than four years the life of this seemingly promising young man, albeit from a tough neighbourhood took a dramatic turn for the worse. Along with six other boys he was accused of murder but was the only one to be convicted. Sodiq’s hopes, aspirations and desires were documented in Adeyemi’s initial film called “Running The Line”.

The purpose of this 60-minute documentary is to discover what the turning point was in Sodiq’s life and how this is microcosm of wider societal issues in Britain today.

The UK National Film and Television School produced film provides the audience with privileged and unprecedented access to a hidden world that we only ever read about in the headlines.

The film was discussed by British Parliamentarians at a House of Commons screening and discussion on the legal device of ‘Joint Enterprise’ in December 2013.  Diane Abbott, MP for Hackney North and Stoke Newington, said: "The issue of joint enterprise is a complex one. As a strong supporter of civil liberties, but also as someone who has first-hand experience of the problems posed by gang culture in urban Britain, I can see why the law warrants review. Sodiq presents us with an opportunity to re-open the discussion, as well as debate other issues with the criminal justice system."

Awards/additional info:

  • Winner Grierson British Documentary Award, Sky Atlantic Student Documentary of the Year, 2013
  • Nominated for International Documentary Association (IDA) documentary award 2013
  • Winner Best Student Film Award and the Goodluck Jonathan President’s Special Award at the Africa International Film Festival, Calabar, Nigeria, 2013
  • Nominated for Best Student Film Award, Sheffield Docs Fest, 2013
  • Nominated for the Sembene Ousmane Films for Development Prize & Official Selection for ZIFF Zanzibar International FIlm Festival, 14.- 22.06., 2014, upcoming
  • Mayoral Screening at TATE Modern Gallery in London in December 2013 with Present Judge Richard Chapelle, Kenny Imafidon, Barry & Margaret Mizzen present. The Mayor of Southwark-London made a pledge to get Sodiq seen by as many people as possible and as well as supporting getting it into schools, colleges, Uni's and prisons.

More:
Listen to an interview with the director on BBC here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio/player/bbc_world_service 

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