Ni Sisi or It's Us is inspired by the election riots that happened in Kenya in 2007. The presidential candidates brought communal tension by spreading many rumors and bribing the people. Many Kenyans lost their precious lives in the riots. To send the message of maintaining a united front, a theatre group S.A.F.E started to tour the country, and later on, their play got filmed. This educational movie targets the Kenyan people and spreads awareness.
Ni Sisi starts with a song titled Kenya and various locations of the country are shown. People are seen wearing yellow t-shirts with Ni Sisi (meaning It’s Us) written on it. A clip of firing and total chaos is played indicating the riots that happened in 2007 when even property was burnt. Roxana is shown traveling on a bus. The narrator of the play, Jabali tells us when things started to turn. He gives us an introduction to his family which includes his three aunts and their children. Roxana was coming to live with them after her mother killed herself.
After Jabali receives Roxana at the bus station, his three aunts jump over the kid and fight over who’ll be the one providing her shelter. The love showered upon her arrival was nice to watch. Kate making fun of Roxana and the fact that her mother killed herself was very displeasing. The day Roxana made her taste her own medicine was a good one as the poor girl finally decided to step up.
Mzito is a shopkeeper and Tall works in his shop. The man is married and is participating in the upcoming elections. He tries to woo Roxana but after learning his intentions, the girl declined his proposal. Intending to win the elections, he started spreading rumors like how the Waturiri tribe is a thieve and their women practice witchcraft. The scene where these lies spread like wildfire depicts how people are foolish and often get caught in the trap set by the politicians. The small fire spread by Mzito almost burnt the land the villagers were living in till Jabali stepped in. All those rumors and whispers happen in reality, and it's shocking to watch them grow.
In my opinion, despite having a slow and meaningless start, Ni Sisi at the end gives us some valuable lessons. I didn’t like how they wasted substantial screen time in the beginning as that too could have been utilized to send a powerful message. The 90-minute film sends us a message that it is we who can bring changes and not the filthy politicians who work for their own benefit. The idea of a united Kenya is presented in the movie and when we think of the impact created by the film on the masses, it must have been huge.
An important takeaway message from the film is choosing a leader who helps in the development and not the other way around. Politics is not a business but a means for the growth of the country. The foul means used should be discontinued as the impact created by them works only in the favor of one individual while destroying the lives of thousands. S.A.F.E continues to perform throughout Kenya and the group is working for a good cause.
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