A Mitchells Plain resident has produced a documentary he hopes will change perceptions that his community is a deadly gangland.
Naeem Mallick, 34, has specifically focused on Rocklands, which was labelled a “No-Go Zone” in a German film that was shown worldwide.
An episode from “No-Go Zones: The World’s Toughest Places”, first aired in 2019, follows a day in the life of a skollie in Rocklands.
It is punted on the internet as: “Ghost Town – one of the toughest and most dangerous neighbourhoods in the world.
“The deadly no-go area is ruled by the Ugly Americans, one of the toughest street gangs in Cape Town. Whoever enters their territory must fear for his life. No police or ambulances will help one there.”
But Naeem says the film, produced by Quintus Media from Germany, has damaged the area’s reputation.
A few months ago, he decided to rewrite the narrative and has now produced the 90-minute documentary about Mitchells Plain, called Who Are We, where various mense talk about the Plain, and the Cape Flats, and its colourful history and diverse communities.
“The aim is to educate the youth and update and remind people that there is more to us than meets the eye; knowledge of self gives confidence to move forward and the courage to oppose injustice,” says Naeem.
“Our history is tainted by injustice to this very day, and somewhat stuck in a psychological hamster wheel we have inherited.
“I feel extremely liberated and humbled that this documentary came to fruition, although there is so much more to be said.
“However, it was indeed the culmination of a collective effort, I have to give credit to my brothers, co-producers, creative consultants and fellow activists Brandon Collins and Rudi Cube.
“Their creative finesse, tireless work and powerful views are priceless.”
Who Are We is available to watch on Naeem’s YouTube channel, Bigglezworth.