fbpx

Diggers and Merchants: A Congolese Copper Digger

by Beckypublished on 31st January 2022

AFRICA DIRECT: African stories by African filmmakers. Perspectives from a diverse continent; storytelling in the hands of local talent.

Diggers and Merchants, by filmmaker Nelson Makengo, immerses us in a life of exhausting physical labour and brutal conditions.

Josué Mukeba has worked in the copper quarries in the Democratic Republic of the Congo for years. Now he wants a stake in the new order. Faced with a new mining code that requires contractors to be Congolese nationals, he stands up for himself and the other diggers. They do not see themselves as victims; they just want a fair chance and some respect.

Nelson Makengo is a Congolese director, visual artist and producer based in Kinshasa. His short films have won many leading international awards and have been screened worldwide, including at IDFA and Sundance. He recently won the bronze award for his short film Nuit Debout (Up at Night) at FESPACO. He is a Sundance Documentary Film Institute grantee.

Up Next

NaimaPenniman
In this stunning spoken-word performance for TED, poet and "freedom-forging futurist" Naima Penniman celebrates the wonders of the natural world and humanity's connection to it. "I wonder if the sun debates dawn some mornings," she says.
sacred-woods
This award-winning documentary from Ivory Coast follows a group of young men who undergo an ancient coming-of-age ceremony in a remote West African forest.
Featured
blues_on_beale
Experience 5 days of rocking, crowd-pumping Blues competition packed with passion, blues music, and suspense. Discover the people who keep The Blues alive on Beale Street and the powerful international impact of America’s musical gift to the world.
ChibezeEzekiel
Africa needs new energy sources to fuel its development, but the continent should invest in renewable energy instead of cheap, polluting alternatives like coal, says climate inclusion activist Chibeze Ezekiel. He tells the story of how he worked with local communities in Ghana to halt the construction of the country's first coal power plant -- and encouraged the government to prioritize investments in renewable energy instead.
In this episode of Studio B Unscripted, Gurinder Chadha and Skin share their experiences of growing up as second-generation immigrants and coming to terms with their identities. They discuss marginalisation, empowerment, and what pushed them to forge new creative paths in the worlds of music and cinema.
diaby-away-game
Abdoulaye Diaby, the rising star of Malian football, realises his dream to play in Europe. The film tells the story of his first season in Europe.