The Veteran actress Leleti Khumalo believes that “The struggle will never end until we get the same level of education for all”. The Sarafina star said the improvement in the struggle for equality in education has been minimal since the film was released in 1992.
With the Youth Day coming up, most South Africans will be watching the film on Tuesday the 16th of June 2020 in commemorations of June 16, 1976
Sarafina! is a 1992 musical drama film based on Mbongeni Ngema’s 1987 musical of the same name. The film was directed by Darrell Roodt and written by Ngema and William Nicholson, and stars Leleti Khumalo, Miriam Makeba, John Kani, Ngema, and Whoopi Goldberg as the title character; Khumalo reprises her role from the stage performance.
The film follows the life of Sarafina (Leleti Khumalo), a young black South African struggling for freedom during the apartheid. While she has remained relatively silent in her opposition of the racist government in her country, the movement to make the language of Afrikaans the official language in her school leads her to protest in the streets with her fellow students. Her anti-government views become even more intense when her favorite teacher (Whoopi Goldberg) is arrested for protesting.
The Imbewu: The Seed actress told IOL that being part of such an iconic play was amazing because Sarafina was not just a South African story. She said it was one that people related to across Africa.
“It is very important to tell stories that people can relate to and stories that mean something to people. It was a given that Sarafina had to be this successful because it was talking about what was happening then. People can relate to the story, they went through it – they know exactly what the movie is about.” Leleti said that the country was still fighting for equal education back then and it would continue to be a battle until someone did something about it. “There is such a difference between education in the townships and in the suburbs. It is so different. We cannot have that, we are still fighting for equality. We really are still a long way from equality.”