A video produced by The New Times’ journalist Faustin Niyigena, has won the best Africa rising award category in the Slum Film Festival.
The mini documentary titled ‘Fastest Woman in Africa’ tells a story of a 21-year-old woman, Jeanne d'Arc Girubuntu, from a humble family in the Eastern Province of Rwanda, who made history by being the first African woman to compete in the 2015 UCI Road World Championships in Richmond, VA and in February 2016.
Giribuntu emerged second in the African Continental Championships Individual Time Trial in Morocco.
Slum Film Festival is the first ever film platform-featuring stories from slums, about slum realities and made by filmmakers from the slums in Africa – and beyond. It is a celebration of the creativity of filmmakers living and working in slums. It is also an opportunity to show a range of films within slum communities who have limited or no access to cinema.
Niyigena, who was not able to travel to Kenya’s Capital, Nairobi, for the awarding ceremony, says that the award presents a new motivation for him to continue bringing out the “beautiful yet untold stories of Rwanda.”
“I am so happy, that a story from our own Rwandan, which was told by a Rwandan could emerge as the best rising film in Africa. This shows that we have lots of untold stories here. All we need is resources and continued support to journalists and filmmakers to keep telling our own stories,” Niyigena says.
He added that for The New Times to win an award in video category is also, “a testament that the media company is still the leading multimedia company in Rwanda.”
Niyigena has submitted the ‘Fastest Woman in Africa’ documentary in more than 40 film festival this year and it has been selected for screenings so far in six festivals including Slum Film Festival in Nairobi, I Luv Africa Film Festival in Ghana, Minutnik Film and Beer Festival in Slovenia, Rwanda Film Festival, Spin – The Cycling Festival in London, England, Edinburgh Festival of Cycling in Scotland and Global Impact Film Festival in Washington DC.
The other film from Rwanda titled ‘Chebet’ also won an award in Short film category in Slum Film Festival.