category Focus: Africa


English, Swahili




A Goat for a Vote


Even in a relatively stable country like Kenya, elections do not always go smoothly. Recent violence surrounding elections has made the need for constant democratic exercise clear. In the Majaooni secondary school, a new generation learns for themselves what democracy means: each year, students elect a new school president. Three candidates are in the running this time: Magdalene, who tries to mobilize support for equal rights for girls in a school dominated by boys; Harry, who comes from a poor neighborhood and sees the position of president as a step towards a better life for him and his family; and Said, a charismatic born politician who is already a scouts leader. The enthusiasm and energy of these three candidates ensures that viewers are on the edge of their seats throughout. In miniature, the school deals with big issues such as principles vs. populist pragmatism, egalitarianism vs. meritocracy, representation for all vs. money in politics. Director Jeroen van Velzen came back to Kenya, where he grew up, to make his films; his earlier documentary, Wavumba, was awarded for best debut at the 2012 Tribeca Film Festival.

The documentary has been "adopted" by Expert Forum.

Interview with the director.


2015 - One World Prague, Czech Republic

2014 - Document Film Festival, UK

2014 - Camden International Film Festival, USA

2014 - Guth Gafa, Ireland

2014 - Netherlands Film Festival, Netherlands, Nomination for Best Long Documentary

2014 - DOK Leipzig, Germany, Nomination for Filmpreis Leipziger Ring

2014 - Traverse City Film Festival, USA