JUGGLING FILM & RADIO: Aloysius Kibira joined the entertainment business while he was 22 years old. He had just left his uncle’s place in Kampala. Today he is one of the most sought after radio presenters in Masaka. He shares his story with Gertrude Mutyaba.
How do you manage to balance all those three things?
Everything has its own time. I anchor the news every Monday to Friday, I do film rehearsals on Saturdays and Sundays and write my scripts during my free time.
It must be hectic juggling all those things?
Not at all. It is a matter of programming yourself on how to balance them. All it takes is passion and courage.
When did you join the film industry?
In 2012. So I have only been around for five years.
Can you tell us about your humble beginnings?
I started serious entertainment business at the age of 22 with my uncles in Kampala but when I got a job in Masaka, I decided to form my own group since I could not commute from Kampala.
What is the name of your group?
It is called Lezen Entertainment.
What are some of the challenges you faced while beginning?
Poverty was at its peak. At first, I thought everything would be easy but when it came to purchasing equipment, it was tough. Sometimes we would hire equipment, which was expensive.
Also getting locations to perform at was a challenge. Most people thought we were taking their land and some would even chase us with pangas. But with time, we managed to get hold of the situation.
How did you manage for all these years?
People started believing in us.
What age groups do you target?
I target all age groups, but mostly the youth since my intentions are to groom them with the aim of making them responsible citizens.
How many members do you have currently?
I started with about 10 members but now I have 25.
How do you manage to pay all of them?
It is not really hard if everything is clear. My group members normally enjoy profits that we get out of CD sales. For instance, each CD one sells, they get a commission of Shs500.
What kind of drama do you play?
It depends on the theme of the play. I normally act as a priest, witch doctor, and any other part that may be fit for me.
Where do you normally entertain people from?
We usually act from theatres such as William Theatre in Masaka, schools, communities, among other places depending on the script.
How many films do you have and how many have you written?
Currently, I have four films, including Emigwa Gy’obwavu, Musawo, Gwemwansiimira, Eyali Mukwano Gwange.
How much do you sell your CDs?
Between Shs2,000 and Shs3,000 depending on the quality.
What are the challenges you face in film industry?
The government has failed to help the film industry by putting in place a law against copyright. Most people sell fake CDs to the communities, which mostly affects our market. The communication systems are promoting Western actors instead of local talent.
Besides entertainment, what other things do you do?
I also do journalism. I am a news reporter and anchor at Radio Buladde based in Masaka District.
How did you get employed at the radio?
I studied film production but found out that I could also do news, so I applied for the job on one of Masaka radio stations.
Any challenges you have encountered in the journalism world?
Of course everything has advantages and disadvantages – I normally get challenged while covering violent incidents. Sometimes you may also find yourself being a victim to the occurrences since I never got tips on how to cover chaotic events. But I can say I am lucky when it comes to news anchoring. I can assure you that I am one of the best male news anchors in Masaka.
What benefits have you got from this industry?
I have managed to meet a number of people who have made me who I am. I am humbled, especially in the journalism field that whoever I dreamed of meeting is now a friend.
Who are some of those people?
The Masaka Diocesan Bishop John Baptist Kaggwa; I think his blessings are what make me move further in life. Other benefits include the respect I get from the community. News reporting has also helped me change the film industry in Greater Masaka. While doing research on stories I relate that in my films. I have also managed to purchase a small piece of land that I am currently using for poultry and cultivation.
What are your future plans?
I plan to use my knowledge to motivate a number of youth in drama as a way of driving them out of poverty.