Moi University has organized the inaugural edition of the Eldoret Film Festival to showcase and celebrate filmmaking in Kenya.
The five-day event running from December 3 to 7, 2018 is organized by the Department of Literature, Theatre and Film Studies in the School of Arts and Social Sciences. It is themed “Kenyan Films, Kenyan Audiences”.
Film is at the centre of the growing cultural and creative industry in the country. The film industry contributes immensely to the country’s GDP. It earns the country Kes200 billion annually.
Apart from the economic benefits, film plays a key role in promoting cultural heritage. Globally, the importance of the film sector has been witnessed in the USA (Hollywood), India (Bollywood) and Nigeria (Nollywood).
In Kenya, a vibrant film culture has been witnessed in Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu. Eldoret is gradually becoming part of this flourishing industry. As such, film makers in Uasin Gishu County are set to benefit immensely.
Speaking during the opening ceremony of the festival at Sirikwa Hotel on Monday December 3, 2018, the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Isaac S. Kosgey, in a speech that was read on his behalf by the Acting Principal, College of Health Sciences, Prof. Paul Ayuo, appreciated the National Government’s input into the Film sector.
“It is through this support that Moi University as an Institution of learning is here today to celebrate with you the film industry in the country. The University, through the support of the Government, is successfully running programmes that directly contribute to this industry. We have programmes within the School of Business, School of Information Sciences, School of Law, School of Arts and Social Sciences and School of Tourism, Hospitality and Events Management, contributing in this regard,” said Prof. Kosgey.
He added: “The Government hasn’t only provided teaching and learning facilities to these programmes. It has also employed staff and continues to support students to pursue these programmes. It doesn’t escape my mind that film falls within the Government’s Big Four Agenda under the Manufacturing pillar. I am proud therefore that by supporting the film industry in Eldoret, we as an Institution are contributing to the Government’s vision as captured in the Big Four Agenda.”
Moi University has been at the forefront of pushing for the creation, development and growth of a film industry based in Eldoret and its environs.
Some of the films to be showcased in the festival have been produced within the University premises and features staff and students.
The University’s efforts have also ensured that Eldoret is considered a major filmmaking destination in the country.
This is in line with the vision of the University which is to nurture innovation and talent in science, technology and development.
“Let me invite you to participate in this festival’s activities, which include; filmmaking workshops, networking opportunities with industry players, public screenings of films and the award ceremony. I would also like to thank Kenya Film Commission, Kenya Copyright Board, County Government of Uasin Gishu, Department of Film Services, Sirikwa Hotel, Udada Trust and The African Perspective (TAP) Magazine for their partnership,|” said Prof. Kosgey.
Present at the opening ceremony were Prof. Peter Amuka, Ms. Emma Ngare, Mr. Juma Musakali, Mr. Cosmas Bii and Dr. Samuel Ndogo.
During the event, the nominees of various categories were unveiled. Also present at the event were actors, actresses and film directors from Eldoret.
The highlight of the festival will be public screenings in Kesses, Annex Shopping Centre, Langas and Kamukunji.
The closing ceremony will be on Friday December 7, 2018, and will be graced by the Governor, Uasin Gishu County, H.E Jackson Mandago and will be closed by Moi University Acting Deputy Vice Chancellor in charge of Administration, Planning and Development, Prof. Nathan O. Ogechi.