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Script .4

Notes to broadcasters

Save and edit the full 5-part drama. (Word document, 300 KB)

Beans, a family affair is a five-episode drama about a group of women who persevere against difficulties to achieve success. The women belong to a village savings or vicoba group in Tanzania, and all of them grow common beans. Women do most of the field work for common beans. But, because of the traditional gender roles in their community, men make all the post-harvest decisions, including selling the beans and controlling the income.

A few of the major female characters in the drama, including Farida and Mama Mjuni, take the lead on this endeavour. They encourage the women to work together on their farms, and finally to grow beans together to market as a group to the village bean factory.

Read the first episode of the drama, including the character list, here.

The drama takes place against a backdrop of dramatic situations, including conflicts between women and men: domestic abuse in one family, and the underhanded efforts of a village womanizer to both manipulate women and profit from criminal activities.

There are light, funny moments in the drama too, though it covers serious themes. If you produce the drama with a local group, ensure that the more serious moments are balanced with the lighter scenes of friends reminiscing and laughing.

Each of the five episodes is approximately 20-25 minutes long, including intro and extro music. Because the episodes are long, you might want to air only two or three scenes at a time in your program. In most cases, two or three episodes take 6-8 minutes.

You could follow up the drama with a call-in program that discusses some of the issues raised in the program, inviting male and female experts on the issues. Discussions could include:

  • how the community divides the work involved in growing and marketing common beans, or other crops grown in your area, and how this might be biased against women’s interests, and may even hurt the family;
  • domestic abuse and the culture or habit of silence that allows it to continue; and
  • the kinds of support men can offer women who are struggling to help themselves and their families in difficult situations.

Script

1. Scene 1

2. Location:
Ext. Farida’s house. Morning.
3. BG SFX:
Ambience at Farida’s house.
4. Characters:
Farida, Jenny.
5. SFX:
HEAVY KNOCKS ON THE DOOR.
6. FARIDA:
(APPROACHING MIC) I’m coming! I’m coming!
7. SFX:
FARIDA OPENS THE DOOR.
8. FARIDA:
(SURPRISED) Jenny! Aren’t you supposed to be at the garage?
9. SFX:
JENNY ENTERS.
10. JENNY:
(WORRIED) What happened? Are you ok? What did he do to you?
11. FARIDA:
What? … What are you talking about?
12. JENNY:
I’m talking about your husband. He came to my house looking for you last night. First of all, is he here?
13. FARIDA:
No, he’s not; he went to work.
14. JENNY:
And the kids? Are they here?
15. FARIDA:
They’re at school. What’s wrong?
16. JENNY
: I should be asking you that … are you okay?
17. FARIDA:
(REASSURING LAUGH) I’m fine! I’m fine! (TRIES TO CHANGE THE SUBJECT) Let me get you some breakfast; I just made some tea and sweet potatoes.
18. JENNY:
I’m not hungry, Farida. Just tell me what happened.
19. FARIDA:
Nothing happened really.
20. JENNY:
Nothing happened? Your husband lost his mind looking for you last night. Where were you?
21. FARIDA:
I was at the Uhuru grounds.
22. JENNY:
I thought the Tunu event ended early.
23. FARIDA:
It did, but there was a women’s meeting after the event. So I brought the kids back home, cooked, and went back for the meeting.
24. JENNY:
Then why did you lie to him? Telling him that you were at my house. You know you got us both in trouble … he thought I was covering for you.
25. FARIDA:
Jenny, you know I couldn’t tell him that I was going for the meeting…. He would die before letting me go out at that time of the night.
26. JENNY:
Ooh, Farida! It’s always better telling the truth.
27. FARIDA:
Look, I thought I would get back home before he returned from work.
28. JENNY:
So what happened when you got back?
29. FARIDA:
(TRYING TO SOUND BELIEVABLE) Nothing happened…. We had a normal argument like normal couples do.
30. JENNY:
(SKEPTICAL) Did he hit you?
31. SFX:
AWKWARD SILENCE.
32. JENNY:
Farida! Did he hit you?
33. FARIDA:
Look he was mad and … and … (FALTERING)
34. JENNY:
(STARTS TO LEAVE ANGRILY, GOING OFF MIC) That’s it! I’ve had enough of this!
35. FARIDA:
(TRIES TO STOP HER) Jenny! Where are you going?
36. JENNY:
(ANGRILY) I’m going to confront him about hitting you, Farida. This can’t go on!
37. FARIDA:
Wait! Wait! Wait! I don’t think that’s a good idea.
38. JENNY:
Are you hearing yourself right now? Or are you so content at being a punching bag for the rest of your life?
39. FARIDA:
(ANGRILY) Look, it’s over, okay? We had our quarrel and we worked it out, okay?
40. JENNY:
(SARCASTIC) You worked it out, eeh? By him hitting you? Is that how you worked it out?
41. FARIDA:
You said yourself that I shouldn’t have lied. (TRYING TO CONVINCE HERSELF) I shouldn’t have lied; it was my fault this time. I should have told him the truth. You know how jealous he can get sometimes.
42. JENNY:
And what about the other times?
43. SFX:
AWKWARD SILENCE.
44. JENNY:
Farida, I have advised you before that you have to take care of yourself, but that’s your decision.… But just think about what kind of an example you are setting for your little girls by showing them that a man can walk all over you like that.
45. SFX:
JENNY LEAVES, SLAMMING THE DOOR BEHIND HER
46. CONTROL:
Jenny

 

47. Scene 2

48. Location:
Ext. Roadside. Morning.
49. BG SFX:
Sound of motor vehicles.
50. Characters:
Grace, Mjuni, Adam, Alex.
51. ADAM:
Come on, pass me the lighter, man!
52. SFX:
SOUND OF A LIGHTER.
53. MJUNI:
(CAUTIOUS) Wait! Wait! Don’t light the cigarette yet. Your sister is coming this way.
54. ALEX:
(CARELESS) Aaah! Let her see! Who cares?
55. GRACE:
(APPROACHES MIC) Mjuni, is that you?
56. ADAM:
(BOISTEROUS) No, it’s not him!
57. SFX:
ADAM AND ALEX BREAK DOWN LAUGHING.
58. ADAM:
(PRETENDS HOSPITALITY) Aaah! Big sister Grace! Welcome! Where are you off to this morning?
59. GRACE:
Leave me alone!
60. ALEX:
Did you cook?
61. GRACE:
In your dreams maybe. (TURNS TO MJUNI) Mjuni, can I talk to you for a moment?
62. ADAM:
What is such a big secret that you can’t talk to him in front of us?
63. GRACE:
It’s none of your business.
64. MJUNI:
Excuse me, guys, I will be back.
65. ALEX:
It’s okay, Mjuni. Take your sweet time.
66. SFX:
GRACE AND MJUNI MOVE ASIDE TO TALK IN PRIVATE AS ADAM AND ALEX ARGUE OVER THE LIGHTER IN THE BACKGROUND.
67. MJUNI:
How is it going, Grace? Where are you heading to with the bucket?
68. GRACE:
I’m going to the well to get some water. Mjuni, aren’t you supposed to be in school now?
69. MJUNI:
It’s recess time.
70. GRACE:
This early? And what are you doing hanging out with them?
71. MJUNI:
Who? Adam and Alex? It’s no problem; they are cool.
72. GRACE:
Listen to me, Mjuni, I know my young brothers. All they do is get in trouble and cause havoc in the village. Most people see them as thugs. Is that how you want people to think of you?
73. MJUNI:
I don’t care what people think of me.
74. GRACE:
Really? And since when do you smoke?
75. MJUNI:
Who me? (NERVOUS LAUGH) I’ve been smoking for a while now.
76. GRACE:
You are lying! I’ve never seen you smoke before! What if your parents happen to pass by and see you?
77. MJUNI:
(REBELLIOUS) I don’t care! What do they know anyway?
78. GRACE:
What happened to you?
79. MJUNI:
Nothing; I’m still the same.
80. GRACE:
No, you have changed. I remember when you were always into your studies and how you used to try to do your best.
81. SFX:
MJUNI LAUGHS.
82. GRACE:
What’s so funny?
83. MJUNI:
I remember you were also into studies. You even used to be the head girl. What happened? Why aren’t you in school?
84. GRACE:
It’s not because I chose to leave school, but because of the circumstances. When I get enough money, I will pursue my A level studies. But you still have to finish school, Mjuni.
85. MJUNI:
Well, good for you!
86. GRACE:
I’m serious, Mjuni. Don’t lose your way by hanging with those two bums.
87. MJUNI:
(IRRITATED) Aaaah! Leave me alone!
88. SFX:
MJUNI LEAVES GRACE AND GOES BACK TO ADAM AND ALEX.
89. CONTROL:
Grace

 

90. Scene 3

91. Location:
Ext. Farida’s farm. Mid-morning.
92. BG SFX:
Farm ambience.
93. Characters:
Farida, Mama Mjuni, Mama K, Grace, Jenny.
94. MAMA MJUNI:
Okay, ladies! Thank you for your good work. We are done clearing Farida’s farm. Tomorrow, it’s Grace and Mama K’s turn.
95. MAMA K:
(JUMPS UP HAPPILY) Yees! And you all better be early tomorrow!
96. SFX:
WOMEN LAUGH.
97. MAMA MJUNI:
Okay, that will be all, ladies!
98. GRACE:
Goodbye, Farida! Goodbye, Mama Mjuni!
99. MAMA MJUNI, FARIDA:
Goodbye, Grace.
100. FARIDA:
Thank you, guys, and goodbye.
101. ALL:
Goodbye.
102. MAMA MJUNI:
(SIGHS WITH EXHAUSTION) I’m so beat!
103. FARIDA:
Tell me about it! I wish I could fly to my bed right now.
104. SFX:
THEY LAUGH.
105. MAMA MJUNI:
I never thought it would be this much work. I think my back is not what it used to be. It must be old age.
106. FARIDA:
Sorry, Mama Mjuni. But at least we are helping each other out now.
107. MAMA MJUNI:
Yes, you are right. This great idea came at the right time. I don’t think I could have endured that much work by myself any longer!
108. FARIDA:
What do you mean by yourself? Don’t you have Mjuni around to help you?
109. MAMA MJUNI:
(FORCEFUL LAUGH) Mjuni? Help with the work? That will be the day the dog brushes its teeth. I hardly see him.
110. FARIDA:
Well, at least you have us now to help you.
111. MAMA MJUNI:
Yes, you are right about that. Well, I should be getting back home.
112. FARIDA:
(ABRUPTLY) Can’t you stay a little longer?
113. MAMA MJUNI:
(WORRIED) Why? Is there something wrong, Farida?
114. FARIDA:
Well, there is something I need to talk to you about.
115. MAMA MJUNI:
What is it?
116. SFX:
SILENCE.
117. MAMA MJUNI:
Farida … did something bad happen?
118. FARIDA:
Well, that is not entirely true …
119. MAMA MJUNI:
What do you mean?
120. FARIDA:
(HESITANT) Well, I’m in a difficult situation and I need your help right now.
121. MAMA MJUNI:
Farida, listen to me. It’s okay; you can open up to me. I will do everything in my power to help.
122. FARIDA:
Things haven’t been so good with my husband lately …
123. SFX:
FARIDA DOESN’T COMPLETE HER SENTENCE AND LEAVES IT HANGING IN THE AIR.
124. MAMA MJUNI:
Yes and …?
125. FARIDA:
(HESITANT) And … and …
126. MAMA MJUNI:
It’s okay, Farida—just spit it out.
127. FARIDA:
(ABRUPTLY) I need to borrow some money so I can pay for my children’s tuition fees because my husband doesn’t have any money at the moment.
128. MAMA MJUNI:
(SUSPICIOUS) Is that all you wanted to tell me?
129. FARIDA:
Yes…. Please, I need your help, Mama Mjuni. I can’t afford to have my kids miss their exams on account of lack of school fees. I promise we will pay you back.
130. MAMA MJUNI:
Well, I don’t have any money at the moment, but I’ll tell you what … I will ask my husband to lend you some money for your children’s tuition fees. How much is it?
131. FARIDA:
Four hundred thousand.
132. MAMA MJUNI:
Okay, don’t worry, my dear.
133. FARIDA:
Oh, thank you, Mama Mjuni!
134. MAMA MJUNI:
It’s okay, my dear.
135. CONTROL:
Mama Mjuni

 

136. Scene 4

137. Location:
Ext. Restaurant. Day.
138. BG SFX:
Restaurant ambience.
139. Characters:
Farida, Jenny, Stella.

140. SFX:
FARIDA, JENNY, AND STELLA OPEN A DOOR AND ENTER IN A RESTAURANT.
141. JENNY:
Wow, this is a nice place!
142. FARIDA:
I’m sure we could find a good place to eat back home instead of coming all the way out here.
143. STELLA:
Farida, will you relax? Jenny, please tell her to relax.
144. FARIDA:
I have to get back early, you know…. I don’t want to be late.
145. STELLA:
I remember her saying the same words when we drove away in that car you stole from your father’s garage.
146. JENNY:
(LAUGHS) She did, actually.
147. FARIDA:
(RECALLING) Please don’t remind me. I was so scared.… Oh my God!
148. STELLA:
(LAUGHS) We all were!
149. JENNY:
I will never forget that day. I never saw my father that mad. And what made it even worse is that it was a client’s car.
150. SFX:
THEY ALL LAUGH.
151. FARIDA:
You were so stupid!
152. JENNY:
And you were all stupid for tagging along.
153. SFX:
THEY ALL LAUGH.
154. STELLA:
Oh, how I missed you guys. It’s been years since we hung out together like this.
155. JENNY, FARIDA:
We missed you too.

156. STELLA:
Aren’t you glad you came here today? We all needed this … you know, some time off from our hectic lives.
157. JENNY:
You’re right about that.
158. FARIDA:
Yes, I really needed this.
159. STELLA:
Yes, me too, especially with the way things are going at the factory.
160. JENNY:
What happened?
161. STELLA:
Oh dear, it’s just we have been receiving a low supply of common beans at the factory.
162. FARIDA:
What about your suppliers like Sigi? I saw him the other day when I came to the factory to see you.
163. STELLA:
Even Sigi has been bringing in a low supply.
164. JENNY:
Maybe that’s because of the bad harvest. You know the whole village has had a low harvest this season.
165. FARIDA:
That’s true. So what are you going to do?
166. STELLA:
I don’t know, really. Our manager Mr. Patel told us to do everything we can to boost supply. We just need more supply from the outside.
167. FARIDA:
(BLURTS OUT) I have an idea! What if our vicoba group starts supplying your factory with common beans?
168. JENNY:
(LAUGHS) Farida, stop with the jokes now. Can’t you see Stella is serious?
169. FARIDA:
I’m serious too.
170. JENNY:
Oh, you are serious? And how is that going to work?
171. FARIDA:
Take Sigi, for instance. He sells common beans to the factory, but the beans were produced in the fields by the toil and the sweat of the women in the village.
172. JENNY:
But don’t forget that it’s mainly the husbands who sell the common beans to Sigi, not the women.
173. STELLA:
Yes, that’s true.
174. FARIDA:
I know. But what if we women decide to grow common beans and sell them to the factory?
175. JENNY:
And how is that possible if most of the women grow common beans on their husbands’ land?
176. STELLA:
(SLOWLY, THINKING IT OVER) Hmmm … all the women would have to be on the same page for it to work.
177. STELLA:
Do you have anybody in your vicoba group that has a larger plot of land where you can grow the common beans?
178. FARIDA:
Other than Mama Mjuni, I don’t think there is anybody. She and her husband Mzee Ali own a large plot of land.
179. STELLA:
Could you convince her to use that plot of land to grow the common beans for this endeavour?
180. JENNY:
Do you think Mama Mjuni will agree?
181. FARIDA
: She probably will…. Mama Mjuni always agrees with good ideas!
182. JENNY:
And what about Mzee Ali?
183. FARIDA:
He might agree to it; Mzee Ali is a very reasonable man. But I ask myself: will the plot of land be enough to cultivate a lot of sacks of common beans for the factory?
184. JENNY:
How many sacks of common beans does the factory need?
185. STELLA:
Well, usually for every harvest, we demand about a thousand sacks of common beans.
186. JENNY:
Eish! That’s a lot!
187. FARIDA:
We can’t produce even half of that on Mama Mjuni’s farm and with the number of women in the group.
188. STELLA:
(EXCITED) But we don’t need you to produce even half of that! We have different buyers, but we can reach an agreement for you to produce a small portion of that number, let’s say 90 to 100 sacks.
189. FARIDA:
Yes, that’s a reasonable number. I think we can pull that off. Don’t you think so, Jenny?
190. JENNY:
(DOUBTFUL) I don’t know, Farida. It’s a lot of work to produce that much. Plus, let’s not get ahead of ourselves here. We still need to talk to Mama Mjuni about the proposition of using her land.
191. STELLA:
Yes, you are right. I think you guys should go ahead and talk to Mama Mjuni first.
192. CONTROL:
Farida<

 

193. Scene 5

194. Location:
Ext. Mama Mjuni’s farm. Day.
195. BG SFX:
Ambience of Mama Mjuni’s farm.
196. Characters:
Mama Mjuni, Farida, Mama K, Grace, Doris, Monica, Mama Juma, Lydia.

197. SFX:
WOMEN ARGUING.
198. MAMA MJUNI:
(RESTORING ORDER) Please, can we have some order! Can we have some order in here!
199. SFX:
NOISE DIES DOWN.
200. MAMA MJUNI:
My fellow beloved women, surely we can disagree, but respect each other’s opinions. Yes, mama Juma; what do you say?
201. MAMA JUMA:
I can hardly produce enough common beans to last my family the whole year, so tell me how am I supposed to produce enough to sell to the factory?
202. FARIDA:
I understand your doubts, mama Juma, but when we work together as a unit, we can produce more.
203. MAMA K:
What is the minimum number of sacks of common beans demanded by the factory?
204. JENNY:
Well, the factory usually demands about a thousand sacks per harvest. But we would be required to produce only a portion of that number, let’s say ninety to 100 sacks.
205. SFX:
SIGHS FROM THE WOMEN.
206. MAMA K:
That is too much!
207. MONICA:
Yes, I agree.
208. FARIDA:
Nothing is impossible under the sun. We can make it if we really try.
209. JENNY:
Yes, I agree with Farida. I think this will eventually benefit us all instead of benefitting misogynistic people like Sigi who feel like they can treat women however they want.
210. GRACE:
Yes, I can attest to that personally. Some of us have had to go through humiliation from people like Sigi just because I wanted to sell my common beans to him.
211. SFX:
MURMURS OF ANGER.
212. MAMA JUMA:
(ANGRILY) That man is shameless!
213. LYDIA:
What an excuse for a man! I won’t ever sell my common beans to him.
214. MONICA:
(INERVENES) That is easy for some of you guys to say. But what about those who don’t have the power to decide where to sell because our husbands make all the decisions post-harvest? What do we do?
215. FARIDA:
I feel your pain, my dear. I’m in the same position as you. My husband makes all the decisions after the harvest. That is why we have decided to ask Mama Mjuni if we can use her plot of land to grow the common beans.
216. SFX:
IT SUDDENLY GETS QUIET.
217. MAMA JUMA:
Do you think that it is possible, Mama Mjuni?
218. MAMA MJUNI:
It’s possible, but I will have to talk to Mzee Ali and see if he agrees to it.
219. LYDIA:
(CUTS IN) But I’m worried it will be too much work to produce common beans and other crops for our families and then produce common beans to sell to the factory, all while taking care of our families.
220. JENNY:
That is why we are working together, isn’t it? This idea came at the right time. We just need to work together.
221. DORIS:
Ninety to 100 sacks is a lot, you know. It’s not an easy job.
222. MAMA MJUNI:
Well, nobody said it would be easy. Success doesn’t come easy. But if we are really determined and we work together wholeheartedly, we can do it!
223. FARIDA:
I agree with Mama Mjuni. I’m ready to work with you all.… Who else is in?
224. JENNY:
I’m in!
225. MONICA:
I’m in!
226. LYDIA:
I’m in!
227. MAMA JUMA:
Me too!
228. GRACE:
I’m in!
229. MAMA MJUNI:
Me too.… What about you, Mama K?
230. SFX:
MOMENT OF HESITATION FROM MAMA K.
231. MAMA K:
Oh, what the hell! I’m in too!
232. SFX:
WOMEN CHEER ENTHUSIASTICALLY.
233. CONTROL:
Mama Mjuni.

 

234. Scene 6

235. Location:
Int. Mama Mjuni’s house. Afternoon.
236. BG SFX:
House ambience.
237. Characters:
Mama Mjuni, Mzee Ali, Mjuni.

238. MZEE ALI:
(CHEWING FOOD) Mama Mjuni, this fish stew is just the way I like it. Not too much lemon—just the right amount.
239. MAMA MJUNI:
Well, I’m glad you liked it. Here … have some more.
240. MZEE ALI:
No! No! No! I’ve had enough; I’m quite full.
241. MAMA MJUNI:
Are you sure?
242. MZEE ALI:
Yes, I’m sure. Well, you didn’t tell me how your day went today.
243. MAMA MJUNI:
(EXCITEDLY) I had one of the best days today!
244. MZEE ALI:
Oh! Looks like someone is in good spirits!
245. MAMA MJUNI:
You can’t begin to imagine! We decided at the vicoba meeting today to go into the business of supplying common beans to the factory! Oh! I’m so happy!
246. MZEE ALI:
Really? I’m happy for you, dear. Who came up with the idea?
247. MAMA MJUNI:
(PROUDLY) It was Farida!
248. MZEE ALI:
That’s a brilliant idea! It’s very smart of her.
249. MAMA MJUNI:
Yes she is a very smart girl, although sometimes I feel bad for her. She must be going through a lot married to that man.
250. MZEE ALI:
(CHANGES THE SUBJECT) It’s a very good idea, but I’m going to be honest with you … it sounds like a lot of hard work. It won’t be easy.
251. MAMA MJU NI:
Nobody said it’s going to be easy. That is why we need all the help we can get.
252. MZEE ALI:
Yes, I agree. You have my support, my dear.
253. MAMA MJUNI:
So the ladies asked me if we can use our plot of land to cultivate the common beans.
254. MZEE ALI:
Do you think that is a good idea?
255. MAMA MJUNI:
Why not? I mean, we grew crops there last year, but we haven’t decided on what to plant this year, so it is just sitting there. We might as well use it.
256. MZEE ALI:
If you all have agreed to it, then you can tell the ladies that it is fine by me.
257. MAMA MJUNI:
Thank you, my dear! Oh! And before I forget, can you lend me some money so I can give it to Farida? I could have given her myself but I’m out of money now.
258. MZEE ALI:
How much does she need?
259. MAMA MJUNI:
Like four hundred thousand.
260. MZEE ALI:
Well, that’s a bit too much, don’t you think?
261. MAMA MJUNI:
She needs it to pay her kids’ school fees.
262. MZEE ALI:
Okay, remind me in the morning to lend you the money.
263. MAMA MJUNI:
She promises to pay us back as soon as her husband gets paid.
264. MZEE ALI:
Okay, my dear.
265. MAMA MJUNI:
Oh! And another thing before I forget … I was thinking you could talk to some of the men to be more supportive to their wives when we start this endeavour. You know, they really should support their wives to be involved with decision-making after harvest—like selling the common beans they spend so much effort to grow! Especially when the men see how successful we will be!
266. MZEE ALI:
Mama Mjuni, you know how some of these men are headstrong. It won’t be an easy task.
267. MAMA MJUNI:
I know that, but you are the district council chairman; these men respect you, so could use your influence to talk to them.
268. MZEE ALI:
I will do what I can.
269. SFX:
DOOR OPENS AND MJUNI ENTERS. HE GREETS HIS PARENTS AS HE TRIES TO MAKE HIS WAY TO THE BEDROOM.
270. MJUNI:
Shikamoo!
[Editors’ note: shikamoo is the respectful greeting of a younger person to an older person in Swahili, and marahaba is the response from the older person that acknowledges that respect.]
271. MZEE ALI:
Marahaba.
272. MAMA MJUNI:
Mjuni! Is this the time you are coming back from school? (BEAT) I thought you were already home.
273. MZEE ALI:
Me too.
274. MAMA MJUNI:
I’m talking to you! Is this the ideal time to come back home?
275. SFX:
MJUNI REMAINS QUIET.
276. MAMA MJUNI:
Oh! You have suddenly turned deaf now, eh? What time is it?
277. MJUNI:
(IN A LOW TONE) Eight p.m.
278. MAMA MJUNI:
So where were you?
279. MJUNI:
I was with my friends.
280. MAMA MJUNI:
Friends?! Friends who let you hang out until this time of the night? I want to know what kind of friends are those.
281. MZEE ALI:
Were these your school friends?
282. MJUNI:
Yes.
283. MAMA MJUNI:
What if something bad happened to you while you were out there?
284. MJUNI:
Look, I’m tired of you treating me like I’m a little child, okay?
285. MAMA MJUNI:
What?
286. MZEE ALI:
(AUTHORITATIVE) Hey, Mjuni, you shouldn’t talk to your mother like that!
287. MJUNI:
(ANGRILY) And I’m tired of you acting like you are my father when you are not!
288. SFX:
MJUNI STORMS AWAY INTO HIS ROOM AND SLAMS THE DOOR ANGRILY.
289. MAMA MJUNI:
(SOBBING) I don’t know what to do with him. He is getting worse and worse.
290. MZEE ALI:
(CONSOLING) It’s okay! Everything will be okay!
291. CONTROL:
Mama Mjuni.

 

292. Scene 7

293. Location:
Ext. Mama Mjuni’s farm. Day.
294. BG SFX:
Bus approaching.
295. Characters:
Farida, Jenny, Grace, Mama K, Mama Mjuni, Stella.

296. MAMA MJUNI:
Welcome, my fellow beloved ladies, to your new farm!
297. SFX:
SIGHS OF WONDER AND ASTONISHMENT AMONG THE WOMEN.
298. GRACE:
(ASTONISHED) Wow! It’s so big!
299. JENNY:
Yes! It’s not how I pictured it.
300. MAMA K:
Excuse me, Mama Mjuni, how big is this farm?
301. MAMA MJUNI:
It’s about eleven acres.
302. MAMA K:
(SIGHS TIREDLY) That is a lot of work!
303. MAMA MJUNI:
Yes! That is why I will need you all to tighten the shoelaces of your boots because this journey we are about to undertake won’t be easy.
304. JENNY:
There is a lot of scrub out here.
305. FARIDA:
Yes. Our first task is to clear this land of unwanted vegetation because right now, as you can see, it’s just scrubland.
306. MAMA MJUNI:
Yes. So we should all be here tomorrow morning to start clearing the bushes. But before I go any further, I know you all have noticed a new face in our midst. I would like to welcome our newest member to the vicoba group … Miss Stella.
307. SFX:
THE LADIES CHEER.
308. MAMA MJUNI:
Miss Stella works at the factory that we will be supplying with the common beans.
309. SFX:
ANOTHER ROAR OF CHEERS.
310. MAMA MJUNI:
So let me welcome her to say a few words.
311. STELLA:
Thank you all for your warm welcome. I’m very happy to be here in my new family. I have to say that I was deeply moved by your determination to better yourselves and I said to myself that I had to join this group of strong women because I was so inspired. So I’m looking forward to working with you all.
312. MAMA K:
(INTERRUPTS) Excuse me, but what is your position at the factory?
313. FARIDA:
Heeh! Mama K, will you let her talk?
314. MAMA K:
I think we all deserve to know.
315. STELLA:
(LAUGHS) No, it’s all right. I’m the head of operations for all the common beans.
316. MAMA K:
So you are like a boss?
317. STELLA:
(LAUGHS) Yes, you can say I’m like a boss.
318. MAMA K:
(CHEERFULLY) Yees! We have a boss of the factory among us!
319. SFX:
EVERYBODY LAUGHS.
320. MAMA K:
Okay, so let me ask you one more thing. Are you going to give us a good deal?
321. STELLA:
Now I will be honest with you all … just because I joined the women’s vicoba, it doesn’t mean I will favour the women’s vicoba. I will be professional at my work and I expect all of you to be professional. The goal is to produce 90-100 sacks of common beans. I think if we put our heart and souls into it, we will be able to produce that number. I count everyone here as a sister and I’m looking forward to working with you all.
322. SFX:
ALL THE LADIES CLAP AND CHEER FOR STELLA.
323. MAMA MJUNI:
And with those strong closing words, I have nothing to add, but urge you all to be here tomorrow so we can start clearing these fields.
324. CONTROL:
Mama Mjuni

 

325. Scene 8

326. Location:
Int. Clothes store. Late afternoon.
327. BG SFX:
Store ambience.
328. Characters:
Doris, Sigi.

329. DORIS:
(EXCITED) My love! Look at this dress! Isn’t it beautiful?
330. SIGI:
(BOASTFULLY) Oh, it’s lovely! Go on, I want you to take any dress you want from this store because I’m going to pay for it.
331. DORIS:
Oh! Thank you, my love! That’s why I love you!
332. SIGI:
I love you too, baby. Give me a kiss.
333. SFX:
DORIS GIVES SIGI A KISS.
334. DORIS:
You know something, Sigi … I’m so lucky to have you! (SNOTTY) No wonder other girls like Grace are jealous of me.
335. SIGI:
Don’t pay them any mind. You are the only one on my mind.
336. DORIS:
Grace is so jealous of me! Do you know she only owns second-hand clothes from thrift shops? I bet she has never been to a store like this.
337. SIGI:
She looks like the type who only wears second-hand clothes.
338. SFX:
DORIS AND SIGI LAUGH.
339. DORIS:
Look at this one, baby! Won’t it look good on me?
340. SIGI:
It looks fabulous on you!
341. DORIS:
(PRANCING AROUND IN HER DRESS) I can just see Grace looking at me enviously as I walk into one of the vicoba meetings
342. SIGI:
Oh! You are going to kill them with that dress, my love!
343. DORIS:
(ARROGANT) You can say that again! You know I’m so sick and tired of Grace and having to see her at the vicoba meetings. But I have no choice now, since we are working on a business venture to supply the factory with common beans (SIGHS).
344. SIGI:
(SHOCKED) Who is? What? What do you mean supply common beans?
345. DORIS:
Oh, didn’t I tell you? We are planning to supply the factory with common beans this harvest.
346. SIGI:
Who?
347. DORIS:
The women’s vicoba.
348. SIGI:
(IN DISBELIEF) You mean all the women in the vicoba are planning to supply the factory with common beans?
349. DORIS:
Yes!
350. SIGI:
(LAUGHS) You must be joking! The women’s vicoba?! You don’t have the money or the resources to pull that off.
351. DORIS:
No, you don’t understand … it’s really serious now. And we have already started working on the farm to produce the common beans at Mama Mjuni’s.
352. SFX:
AWKWARD SILENCE.
353. DORIS:
What’s wrong, my love? Are you okay?
354. SIGI:
No, it’s nothing … Let’s leave.
355. DORIS:
What do you mean leave? I just started shopping.
356. SIGI:
(ANGRILY) Look! I don’t want to argue with you—let’s leave! (GRABBING HER ARM)
357. DORIS:
(PAINFULLY) Ouuch! You are hurting me! Let go of my arm.
358. SIGI:
Let’s go, okay!
359. SFX:
SIGI AND DORIS LEAVE THE STORE.
360. DORIS:
Why are you acting so cruelly?
361. SIGI:
You think I don’t know what you’re doing?
362. DORIS:
(CONFUSED) What do you mean?
363. SIGI:
You and the other women are conspiring to take my business away from me.
364. DORIS:
What?! You know I wouldn’t do that to you, my love.
365. SIGI:
Did they send you to spy on my business and figure out how to take it from me?
366. DORIS:
Baby, you know that doesn’t make any sense. If that was the plan, would I have told you about us doing the business in the first place?
367. SIGI:
Look, I don’t want to hear any of that! (LAUGHS) I can’t believe that I’ve been spending my money on you this whole time and you have been scheming with those women all along.
368. DORIS:
(PLEADING) Sigi, you know I love you and I would never do that to you, my love!
369. SIGI:
(ANGRILY) Look, don’t touch me, okay! From now on, I want you to leave me alone. I don’t ever want to see you again.
370. DORIS:
(CRYING) Sigi, where are you going?
371. SFX:
SIGI GETS IN HIS CAR AND DRIVES OFF.
372. DORIS:
(CRYING HYSTERICALLY) Sigi, wait! Don’t go!
373. CONTROL:
Doris

 

374. Scene 9

375. Location:
The women’s vicoba farm.
376. BG SFX:
Ambience of the farm.
377. Characters:
Mama Mjuni, Farida, Grace, Doris.

378. MAMA MJUNI:
My beloved women, we are gathered here today to start our work in clearing these fields. But before we start, I want you all to know that we are a family here. So we should set our differences aside and work together as a team. So I would like to ask anybody with grudges to settle their differences now before we start our work.
379. SFX
: AWKWARD SILENCE.
380. MAMA MJUNI:
If you have any misunderstandings with anybody, it’s better to settle it now. Because we wouldn’t want any misunderstandings to hinder our work.
381. SFX:
MURMURS FROM THE LADIES.
382. SFX:
A LOUD SOB IS HEARD.
383. MAMA MJUNI:
What’s going on?
384. FARIDA:
It’s Doris.
385. MAMA MJUNI:
What happened?
386. FARIDA:
We don’t know.
387. SFX:
DORIS CONTINUES TO CRY AS THE MURMUR FROM THE LADIES CONTINUES.
388. MAMA MJUNI:
What is wrong, Doris?
389. DORIS:
(SOBBING) I am so stupid, Mama Mjuni.
390. MAMA MJUNI:
Why do you say that? You know that you are not stupid, Doris.
391. DORIS:
Yes, I am. I let a man like Sigi come between me and my friend Grace. (CONTINUES TO SOB)
392. MAMA MJUNI:
Oh, my dear! Grace, please, come here.
393. SFX:
GRACE COMES FORWARD TOWARDS DORIS AND MAMA MJUNI.
394. MAMA MJUNI:
Grace, I think Doris has something she wants to say to you.
395. DORIS:
Grace, please forgive me for my past behaviour towards you. I’m sorry.
396. GRACE:
It’s okay; I forgive you, my dear.
397. DORIS:
I can’t believe I was so blind to Sigi’s true colours and he was just using me all along. He used me and threw me away like a piece of worn-out rag.
398. GRACE:
It’s okay, my dear … It’s okay. I’m happy that you eventually figured out your worth because it’s the best thing that could have happened to you. Sigi doesn’t deserve you. Come here.
399. SFX:
GRACE EMBRACES DORIS AND THE OTHER WOMEN CHEER FOR THEM.
400. MAMA MJUNI:
Okay, that is a good sight, isn’t it, my fellow ladies?
401. ALL:
Yes.
402. GRACE:
Okay, I forgave you, but I have to ask you, Doris … are you going to work in those high heels?
403. DORIS:
(EXCITED) Yes, do you like them?
404. GRACE:
Yes, I do, but I don’t think they’re suitable for doing this kind of work.
405. DORIS:
Why not? A woman has to look good even when working!
406. SFX:
WOMEN LAUGH.
407. CONTROL:
Doris.

 

408. Scene 10

409. Location:
Ext. Viroboto’s hangout / Mama Mjuni’s farm. Evening.
410. BG SFX:
Music playing.
411. Characters:
Sigi, Adam, Alex, Mjuni.

412. SFX:
MUSIC PLAYING.
413. ADAM:
(SINGING TO THE TUNE ON THE RADIO) Kababayeee! Kababayeee! (STOPS SINGING) Yo Chini Beez is the man!
414. ALEX:
Yeah, he’s got flavour! Too much flavour!
415. MJUNI:
I like his last song too!
416. SFX:
SIGI’S CAR ARRIVES.
417. SIGI:
Hey, kids! What are you up to?
418. ALEX:
(ANGRILY) Hey man, there are no kids here! Okay?
419. ADAM:
Do we look like kids to you?
420. SIGI:
(LAUGHS) Okay, take it easy, guys; I was just playing around. So you guys want to take a trip with me?
421. ADAM:
We don’t need to go on your trip because this reefer has got us on a trip already!
422. SFX:
ADAM, ALEX, AND MJUNI LAUGH.
423. SIGI:
Okay, so would you rather smoke reefer all day or make some serious money?
424. ALEX:
(EXCITEDLY) Now you are talking!
425. ADAM:
Where are we heading to?
426. SIGI:
(IMPATIENT) Look—enough questions! Just come with me and you’ll see.
427. SFX:
ADAM, ALEX, AND MJUNI GET INTO THE CAR.
428. SIGI:
(LOUDLY) Hey! Hey! Hey! Wait a minute! Who is this other kid?
429. ALEX:
Oh, Mjuni! He is the new kid.
430. SIGI:
And what is he doing in my car?
431. ADAM:
Don’t worry about it, Sigi man, Mjuni is cool! He is with us!
432. SIGI:
(STILL LOUD) So what if he is with you? I don’t want any newbie who will crack under pressure when the going gets tough. Because from the look of things, he is soft!
433. MJUNI:
(SULKY) I’m not soft!
434. SIGI:
(ANGRILY) I didn’t ask you anything! Did I?
435. ADAM:
(TO MJUNI) It’s okay, Mjuni, just keep quiet. (TO SIGI) Hey, Sigi, man, you can trust him. He is alright.
436. SIGI:
(STILL LOUD AND ANGRY) He better be. This is the most important job you’ve ever done!
437. SFX:
SIGI SWITCHES ON THE ENGINE OF HIS CAR AND THEY DRIVE AWAY.
438. FADE OUT

439. FADE IN

440. SFX:
CAR APPROACHING MIC. ENGINE SHUTS DOWN.
441. SIGI:
We‘re here!
442. ALEX:
So what are we doing here?
443. SIGI:
Are you stupid! Tell me … what do you see in front of you?
444. ALEX:
(HESITATING, NERVOUS WITH SIGI’S ANGER) A … a … a farm.
445. SIGI:
Yes! A farm but not just any farm. This is the women’s vicoba farm.
446. ADAM:
Oh. and so what do you want us to do here?
447. SIGI:
(PROUDLY) I want you to cause proper wreckage to it.
448. ADAM:
(LAUGHS A LITTLE NERVOUSLY) Are you serious?
449. MJUNI:
(ALMOST PLAINTIVELY) Why do you want us to destroy their farm?
450. SIGI:
(ANGRY) Keep quiet! You know for a newbie, you sure ask a lot of questions. (AUTHORITATIVE, LOUD) I already made it clear that you speak when spoken to!
451. ALEX:
(TRYING TO APPEASE SIGI) It’s okay, Sigi. (TO MJUNI) Okay, Mjuni, just do as you’re told.
452. ADAM:
So what else do we have to do?
453. SIGI:
(LOUD AND ANGRY) I already told you! All you have to do is just destroy the farm. I want this farm in absolute ruins.
454. ADAM:
And what about our payment?
455. SIGI:
Just do it! You will get it when you are done with the task.
456. ALEX:
Okay.
457. SIGI:
Okay, we’re done here. Just get out of my car.
458. SFX:
ADAM, ALEX, AND MJUNI GET DOWN FROM THE CAR AND SIGI DRIVES OFF.
459. MJUNI:
Wow, what’s wrong with him! I don’t like his tone.
460. ADAM:
I know! I’m fed up with him myself! (TO ALEX) What did I tell you? We need to start making our own moves, man!
461. ALEX:
This is our last job! After this, we are done with him! So let’s just do this and get it over with!
462. ADAM:
No, I think I have a better idea.
463. MJUNI:
(HESITATING) What do you mean?
464. ALEX
: Yes, what do you mean?
465. ADAM:
Just follow me!
466. CONTROL:
Sigi

Acknowledgements

Contributed by: Kheri Mkali, script writer, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Reviewed by: Frederick Baijukya,agronomist and N2 country coordinator for Tanzania, International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA), East Africa Hub, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

This work was carried out with the aid of a grant from the International Development Research Centre, Ottawa, Canada, www.idrc.ca, and with financial support from the Government of Canada, provided through Global Affairs Canada, www.international.gc.ca

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