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Morocco bans controversial movie about Prophet Muhammad’s daughter ‘The Lady of Heaven’

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The Moroccan Cinematographic Center (CCM), has banned a controversial movie about one of the daughters of Islam Prophet Muhammad, entitled ‘The Lady of Heaven’ which sparked outrage among Muslim communities across the world.

The CCM, in a statement on Saturday while banning the movie, said it acted in line with the position of the country’s Council of Ulemas, which called for a ban on the from being screened or commercialized across Morocco.

The CCM statement emphasized that the “competent services in the Kingdom are used to authorize cinematographic and audiovisual works, whether they are shot within the national territory or abroad.”

“The process is in respect to the legislative and regulatory texts governing the cinematographic sector in Morocco,” the statement noted.

On it’s part, the Moroccan Council of Ulemas condemned the content of the movie, emphasizing that the film constituted a “flagrant falsification of facts” and contains a heinous “act which cannot be accepted by Muslims.”

The controversial movie produced by foremost Moroccan filmmaker Eli King and author Yasser Al Habib, was released on June 3.

It portrays the daughter of Prophet Muhammad, Fatima al-Zharab as being a member of the Shia denomination of Islam, sparking outrage and concerns among Sunni Muslims across the world who believe the Prophet and his family were Sunnis.

Since its release, the controversial film caused widespread outrage among Muslims across the world, with the Muslim community in the United Kingdom holding nationwide protests, with 120,000 people signing petitions to have the film pulled down from cinemas, saying that its plot does not accurately portray historical events as they happened as it was racist and blasphemous.

While responding to the criticism the movie has received, the producer Malik Shlibak said that the outrage and controversy is a “massive, massive publicity for the film,” adding that he and his team “expected this from the start.”

“We’re not presenting an over-romanticised version of history. We spent a year in pre-production making sure the history is accurate.”

Shlibak expressed his acceptance of people’s freedom to criticize the film, saying that “any religious topic you tackle is going to have disagreements amongst different groups.”

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Germany to return prized artefacts stolen from Africa during colonial rule

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The German government has agreed to return prized artefacts stolen from Aftican countries, particularly from Cameroon, Namibia and Tanzania, during the colonial times over 120 years ago, the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation, said in a statement on Tuesday.

The priceless artefacts which were looted by the German colonial government officials during the colonial era will be permanently returned to their original countries, the Foundation officials said.

The Berlin-based Heritage Foundation which manages museums based in the German capital said it had entered into negotiations on the returns of artefacts to their countries of origin.

According to the Heritage Foundation, some of the artefacts to be returned are a shell-studded statue of a mother goddess named Ngonnso, which holds “great spiritual significance for the Nso’ people of northwest Cameroon.”

The statue, according to the Foundation, has been part of the collection of Berlin’s Ethnological Museum since 1903, after a German colonial officer who had taken it by force from the Nso tribe ‘donated’ it to the government.

The board also approved the permanent return of 23 artefacts including jewellery, tools and fashion items, to Namibia, the statement noted.

The artefacts which were stolen from Namibia during the colonial period from 1884 to 1919, were sent to the southern African country in May for research purposes and will now remain there.

The statement further said the Foundation’s President, Hermann Parzinger, has also been authorised to sign an agreement on the return of objects Germany looted from Tanzania during the Maji Maji Rebellion and other conflicts during its early 20th-century colonial rule.

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Nigerian singing sensations, Wizkid, Tems, win 2022 BET Awards

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Nigerian music stars, Ayo Balogun and Temilade Openiyi, popularly known as Wizkid and Tems respectively, were the biggest African winners at the 2022 Black Entertainment Television (BET) Awards ceremony, an annual award event to celebrate black excellence in music, culture and sports, held at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, in the early hours of Monday.

The talented Nigerian songstress won in the Best International Act category, beating compatriot Fireboy, Dave from the UK, Dinos from France, Fally Ipupa from Congo, Little Simz from the UK, Ludmilla from Brazil, Major League Djz from South Africa, and Tayc from France, to clinch the coveted award.

While receiving the award, Tems, an advocate of women and girls’ rights, urged women to continue on their chosen path, as hard work usually pays off in the end.

“Thank you so much for this, thank you so much. It’s an honour… I mean, this is my first award show that I’m winning something and I just want to use this as an opportunity to speak to every single young, old, whatever, every single woman watching this, every single girl watching this at home. Where I’m from, things like this don’t happen,” the elated Tems said.

Wizkid also made history at the 2022 BET Awards when his super single ‘Essence,’ featuring Tems and Justin Bieber, won the Best Collaboration award and with that win, ‘Essence’ has become the first African song to win a BET Award, also making Wizkid the first Nigerian and African to win an award outside the Best International Acts category.

‘Essence’ dusted other songs in the category like ‘Every Change I Get’ by DJ Khaled ft Lil baby and Lil Durk; ‘Family Ties’ by Baby Seem ft Kenderick Lamar; ‘Whole Lotta’ by Bia ft Nicki Minaj; ‘Way 2 Sexy’, Drake ft Future and Young Thug, and ‘Kiss me More’ by Doja Cat ft SZA, to clinch the award.

Wizkid had previously won the BET Award when he featured on Beyonce’s ‘Brown Skin Girl.”

Before the win by Tems, other Nigerian acts who have won awards in the Best International Act include 2Baba, D’banj, Ice Prince, Wizkid, Davido and Burna Boy.

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