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About the Piece

This piece was filmed in Guguletu Township, Cape Town, South Africa.

Fr Dick O'Riordan represents the last wave of Irish missionaries who came to places like South Africa to work with the most marginalized and disadvantaged people in society.

In 1967, when he arrived in Cape Town, Fr O’Riordan found a system of racial discrimination and evil in the form of apartheid.

For him it was never about colour, religion or nationality; it was simply a question of right and wrong.

From the moment he arrived his devotion to the anti-apartheid struggle was both remarkable and courageous.

For years he encountered the brutality of apartheid before he too became a victim.

Deported in 1978, Fr O’Riordan was forced to continue his work in places such as Tanzania, Zambia and Lesotho before returning to South Africa in 1980.

In 1986 he was deported for a second time (they say you have to tell a Corkman twice - he doesn't hear you the first time because he's talking himself) before returning in the early 1990s.

Today, over forty years later, he continues his great work in the townships of Cape Town.

Fr O’Riordan speaks fluent Xhoza, the local African language. He is affectionately known in his community by his adopted clan name 'Mkwemnte.'

His life story is also a journey; a journey which helped to change the face of a nation.


About the Director

Jamie Macken is an Irish freelance producer/journalist currently based in Cape Town, South Africa.

For more go to www.jem-scribbles.blogspot.com or Twitter; jamiemacken

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