' You can cut the flowers, but you can't stop Spring from coming.' - Pablo Neruda
Zarina Maharaj is the writer/director/narrator of the TV historical docudrama 'Flat 13' about the struggle against apartheid that preceded the 1964 Rivonia Trial, a film commissioned by eNCA, an English-speaking South African TV channel with a global reach. With cinema and TV screenings in SA and across the world , the film was originally shown at several international film festivals, including the joint Berlinale/Durban Film Festival and China's Sechuan International Film Festival, where it was nominated for Best Director, then distributed internationally by Off the Fence, an Amsterdam- based film company - for more click on 'Film' above.
A graduate of the online Screenwriting course at UCLA's School of Theater, Film and Television (TFT), and nominated there for the prestigious Nate Wilson Student Award for Screenwriting, Zarina also successfully gained admission to a summer stint at the UKs National Film and Television School (NFTS).
Having earlier authored her award-winning memoir 'Dancing to a Different Rhythm' reviewed by the South African Nobel Laureate of Literature, Nadine Gordimer, and the esteemed feminist sociologist Professor Fatima Meer, as well as by Joel Joffe of the British House of Lords and several newspaper journalists - including those from The Sowetan and other dailies (click on 'Memoir') - Zarina had also written, after gaining her Master's degree in Gender and Development from Sussex University, regular newspaper opinion columns for the UK's Independent Newspaper Group's South African daily, The Star newspaper's Business Report , on the impact of gender issues on SA's social and economic development.
At this time she was also a member of the international editing collective of the global academic journal 'Feminist Review', contributing articles to it and to one of SA's socio-political journals 'Transformation', as well as to debates on gender issues with Kwazulu Natal's Professional Women’ League - see 'Publications'. Subsequently taking up a consultancy to business on women's economic empowerment, Zarina's first Master’s degree, in Mathematics from Nottingham University, served her well - as it previously had in the UK as a mathematician in the international Xerox team that had developed the fax machine.
Yet despite this wealth of experience, she was denied opportunities in public service through an abuse of power by the first post-Mandela ANC government of 1999, which was spreading false allegations of corruption - including through certain media - against her then- husband Mac Maharaj (and by association against her too, caught as she was in the political crossfire between that new post-Mandela President himself and Mac Maharaj) - see Abuse of Power.
See also Shades of Difference for President Mandela's take on this abuse of power, written a few years before his death. As for his view on the role played by wives and mothers like Zarina in the struggle for freedom, see Struggle Days.
Now , as at 2023, the FOLLOWING MEDIA INTERVIEWS, among many others, finally spoke to the lie of those false corruption allegations, which had unsurprisingly, in Pablo Neruda's words, '...not stopped Spring from coming' for the Maharaj's - as witnessed also in Zarina's post-apartheid published writings/film-making ventures:
* the eNCA interview at https://youtu.be/Hi4POOuPvR4
* the interview by NewZroom Afrika at https://youtu.be/wj5DvyWFpss
* Mac's input to the 55th National Conference of the ANC in Dec '22/Jan '23.
Ironically, some of these interviews/videos finally exonerating the Maharaj's were conducted by some of the very media that had previously been working hand in glove with the ANC government and its then National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) - which had been feeding the media false information, illegally - so that the Maharaj's could continue to be prosecuted in the court of public opinion through a trial by media, given the NPA had no case at all to prosecute the Maharaj's in a court of law (see Abuse of Power for Judge Hefer's comments in this regard, and 'Dancing to a Different Rhythm' for why Mac Maharaj and his family were so unjustly and corruptly persecuted by that ANC government and its media hacks for so long).
Now, as at 2023, such ANC government corruption over the decades has morphed more typically into that of financial greed and self-enrichment by many of its leaders and public servants at the expense of a better life for South Africa's people, notably the poor. Yet hope continues to burn in South Africans for a newly elected government one day that will deliver that better life for all .