The Witches of Gambaga (educational)

  • Directed by: Yaba Badoe
  • Produced by: Yaba Badoe & Amina Mama
Released: 2011
Running Time: 55 min

THE WITCHES OF GAMBAGA is the extraordinary story of a community of women condemned to live as witches in Northern Ghana. Every year in this part of Ghana, hundreds of women endure communal and domestic violence as a result of traditional religious beliefs that demonize women. It’s also assumed that it is in women’s nature to harm others. These beliefs, combined with decades of poor health and educational standards, mean women inhabit a world where it is believed that nothing – not even illness or death – happens by chance. For over a century, women from all over the northern region have found refuge in a camp in the town of Gambaga, where they live under the protection of the chief, Gambarrana, the custodian of one of four places of sanctuary for women condemned of witchcraft. Made over the course of 5 years, this disturbing expose is the product of a collaboration between members of the 100-strong community of "witches" and women’s movement activists determined to end abusive practices and improve women’s lives in Africa. Painful experience and insight come together to create an intimate portrait of the lives of women ostracized by their communities. Told largely by the women themselves, their incredible stories and struggles are conveyed to a wide range of audiences by the director’s narration.

CLICK HERE to read Collective Eye's interview with Director & Producer Yara Badoe

Awards

  • Best Festival Documentary 2010 – Black International Film Festival UK
  • 2nd Price – Documentaries, FESPACO 2011

Quotes

“An excellent exploration of how women are victimized… a valuable resource for understanding how to end this problem.” 
– Cornelius Moore, California Newsreel

“A shocking, extraordinary film…” 
– Michael Eaton, screenwriter

"A Brave and Brilliant Production" 
– Hope for the African Village Child Trust

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