Ten-year old Tabitha is an HIV positive orphan who lives with her Mainini (a Shona word for aunt) in a village in Zimbabwe. But embittered at being abandoned by her husband and worn out by the daily struggle to survive in Zimbabwe’s economic crisis, Mainini neglects Tabitha, and crucially fails to feed her the nutritious diet she needs to cope with her HIV status. As Tabitha’s health deteriorates, her school friend Tino and Tino’s mother’s concerns grow, and they do their best to take care of her. Tragically, their help comes too late. But it does have one redeeming outcome, helping to bring together and energies the village community to help its most vulnerable members. At the height of Tsitsi Dangarembga’s memorable drama, singer and actor Plaxedes Wenyika’s powerful delivery of the song ‘Shingira’, helps underline the everyday heroism of ordinary people – teachers, doctors or health professionals – taking positive action to keep children like Tabitha alive, in spite of the harsh economic and political conditions in Zimbabwe today.
Directed: Tsitsi Dangarembga