One of Africa’s most respected and famous filmmakers Ousmane Sembene, also known as the Father of African Cinema, passed away on 9 June. Messages of condolence have been pouring into the office of the Pan African Federation of Filmmakers (FEPACI), an institution that Sembene co-founded in 1969.
He did not spare African rulers. He remained critical of post-colonial Africa for failing to meet many of her peoples’ expectations, where injustice continues to prevail. Sembene Ousmane is recognised as the Father of African cinema and has received countless awards and distinctions. As with his books, he used the medium of film as a critical and an educational tool, without compromising on aesthetics and the artistic impulse. His work promoted freedom and social justice, and aspired to restoring pride and dignity to the African people. He was a founder member of FAPACI (Pan African Federation of Film Makers) 1969-1970. South Africa joins the rest of Africa and the world in paying our deepest respects to a great revolutionary artist, Sembene Ousmane.