Life in Makoko – Director DijiaderoGBA’s Interview | The Lagos Series, Week 9
From the good to the bad to the ugly, Lagos gives you different faces. One of the faces of Lagos is Makoko, a community which hosts about a million people, according to research. In his latest documentary, Life in Makoko, DijiaderoGBA shares highly visual and emotionally intriguing stories of Makoko. The documentary is what you would call “storytelling at its peak”. The visuals, the soundtrack, the people, the place, the stories and everything are proof that DijiaderoGBA has done a more than an excellent job on this project.
DijiaderoGBA is a Nigerian filmmaker/Director, writer and photographer who, from childhood, has been a fan of storytelling. He attributes his love for stories to where he grew up. In his words, “In as much as there are many stories to be told in the world, my main focus and love is African storytelling because that’s who I am, an African.” He is basically a storyteller via films, writings and photography.
The Lagos Series engaged the award-winning filmmaker in an interview in a bid to allow him to share personal information about Life in Makoko, including what inspired the story and what he hoped to achieve with the story.
What inspired the Makoko story?
I got to know about the community called Makoko some years back and I did more research via Google and mostly, YouTube. Since then, I have always wanted to tell the community’s story. Last month, I met a tweep and we started talking about films and how she wants me to help tell her story. Fast forward, I didn’t know what made me mention Makoko in our conversation but as soon as I mentioned it, she liked the idea and told me she lived there for almost two decades!
I was so happy. We talked about meeting up and after some days, I travelled to Lagos and we went to Makoko together for the pre-production stage of the documentary. Weeks later, we made the documentary and here it is, telling the story I have wanted to tell.
What do you hope to achieve with the Makoko story?
My major aim is to help the society and the less-privileged living there, especially the kids. I called my team before we went there to make the documentary and told them all I want to achieve with this project is to get the story out and hope people see to help.
I’m glad to say last week Sunday, I was there with some people that saw the documentary and thought it was right to give the community some used clothes, shoes, food etc. We fed some people and gave out a lot of stuff for upkeep. I still want more NGOs, individuals and elite people in the society to see this project and give to the society.
What has the feedback been like since you published the video?
It’s been amazing and blessed. I have gotten feedback from people all over the world. People that never knew about the community and its people. It’s been great so far for me and my team.
Is this a one-off thing or is it a project where you also get to visit other areas in Lagos?
Well, I can’t say for now because I major in films not documentary but when the time comes and I see a reason to tell stories via documentary, I will gladly do. Lol.
If you haven’t already seen Life in Makoko, you definitely should do that here and let him know your thoughts:
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The Lagos Series is a project which aims at sharing an enlightening, entertaining and inspiring narrative of Lagos in both written and visual media.
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