HD digital film, colour with sound
Two channel and single channel versions
Jos, Plateau State, Nigeria
Commissioned by Fondazione In Between Art Film, Italy (For the project “A Foreign Language”, curated by Leonardo Bigazzi, Alessandro Rabottini and Paola Ugolini).
Supported by Africa Culture Fund.
Director: Karimah Ashadu
Location manager: Karimah Ashadu
Editor: Karimah Ashadu
Camera: Aigberadion Israel Ikhazuangbe
Location sound recordist: Anthony Monday
Colour correction and sound adjustments: Cristian Manzutto
Co-producers: Golddust by Ashadu
“Plateau” profiles a group of undocumented tin-miners in Nigeria’s Jos-Plateau state, exploring the socio-economic implications of their activities. Before Nigeria’s independence, Plateau State was central to the mining of minerals such as tin and columbite. Tin deposits were discovered in Jos-Plateau and the British colonial regime at the time exploited the area, with tin mining becoming a fully blown industry reaching its peak in the 1940s.
Post-colonialism, after the expiration of the International Tin Agreement in 1985, the market collapsed, and as many of these companies ceased trading, mines closed and workers became redundant.
Having gained the skills and knowledge of mining, these workers formed small communities and began digging the land for mineral deposits, as a way towards autonomy. They passed their skills on to future generations.
Present day, mining continues with a whole host of complications. Without adequate machinery, the process is rudimentary and unmonitored, posing grave challenges to miners, inhabitants of Jos-Plateau and the surrounding ecosystem.
“Plateau” questions notions of independence and the detrimental impact of forgotten industries.
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