Film school blacks out graduates

HARARE - A state-run film school headed by a former television boss is blacking out the future of hundreds of its former students, some who have gone five years without certificates.

Since its inception in 2007, the Zimbabwe Film and Television School in Southern Africa (Ziftessa) has not offered its students certificates, leaving many hard-pressed to find jobs.

The institution, led by Rino Zhuwarara, offers photography, television and film studies.

Students who completed their courses say they are dejected that they are yet to receive their diplomas, notwithstanding the fact that they have paid the required fees.

“I was supposed to graduate in 2010. But still now I haven’t received my diploma. We fear that we have been duped as the director is postponing the dates despite promises,” said a former student.

“He promised us a graduation ceremony in April but now we are in May and there has been no graduation,” fumed the student, who said he enrolled in Film and Television studies majoring in Producing and Directing.

Ziftessa is run by the Media, Information and Publicity ministry in association with UN agency, UNESCO.

A brainchild of the Media ministry, the institution could be on the verge of collapse.

Already, some students who had enrolled with the institution have moved to other tertiary institutions such as the Harare Polytechnic which offers Mass Communication studies, a substitute for their desired careers.

Some have derailed completely and have moved to teaching because they have no proof of having completed their courses at Ziftessa.

Zhuwarara who was once boss at the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Holdings, is still hopeful that a graduation ceremony will be held for all students who have passed through the institution since 2007.

“We will tell you or send a press statement when we have decided on the date of the graduation day. It will combine everyone who was with us since 2007,” said Zhuwarara. - Bryan Gumbo

Comments (1)

It is very true that our Film School in Harare has never been able to operate and this is obviously because both its ministers and its staff lack training in film. Efforts that have been made to change the situation have flopped because Minister Jonathan Moyo and ALL his staff there do not have any film backgrounds. How sad!

T.K. Tsodzo - 21 May 2015

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