national Arts Festival Banner

Thursday, April 9, 2020


(Keandre Brahim, Sashica Ramlutch, Minnie Ntuli & Jason Mccall)

Ever asked yourself the age-old question of “where did I come from?” and “how did my family end up living in South Africa?”

This April, the HISTORY Channel on DStv 186 has your back, with a look at the dynamics of researching your genealogical line in South Africa.

The brand-new once-off local documentary special Your People My People takes four South African strangers on a quest to trace their ancestry and discover the science and history behind DNA testing which ultimately shaped who they are. One will be blindsided, while for another the result will expose surprising links to an historical global figure.

(Right: Les Aupiais & Pat Pillai)

The locally-produced show, hosted by renowned news and TV personality Pat Pillai and magazine editor Les Aupiais, is a journey of discovery using science to reveal the history of four ordinary South Africans: radio personalities Minnie Ntuli and Jason Mccall together with Sashica Ramlutch and Keandre Brahim.

The four travel to places and spaces in history and participate in activities based on their gene pool. From an emotional re-enactment of the Battle of Blood River, to spending a sun-beaten day as indentured labourers, they learn as much about themselves as they do each other.

Your People My People is about a group of South Africans that journey into the past based on the results of a DNA test that maps their identity,” says producer Julie Laurenz.  “They are really hoping to dig up the truth about their ancestry, why their families ended up in Southern Africa and how their story fits into history.”

This once off special airs on April 19, 2020, at 20h15 and will inspire HISTORY viewers to embark on their own journey of self-discovery.

Also new to HISTORY is the Rise of Extremism Stunt featuring premiere documentaries every Saturday at 20h15. It kicks off on April 4, 2020, with ISIS: The Rise of Terror, which delves behind the origins of the Islamic State, what they want to achieve, and how their shocking and violent tactics have redefined warfare in the 21st century. Focusing on fateful turning points in history, this documentary looks at amongst others; America’s eight-year war in Iraq and the unrepentant ISIS fighter who justifies beheadings.

This is followed on April 11, 2020, by White Supremacy: Going Under, which tells the extraordinary stories of three people who infiltrated white hate groups in an effort to bring them down from the inside. These individuals unknowingly become part of fighting something far larger – the fight against the tight network of American white supremacy groups that is growing bolder and stronger every day.

Divided States on April 18, 2020, is a mini-series that documents the blatant acts of anti-Semitism, homophobia and racism which appear to be on the rise in America. Against the backdrop of the current state of hate in America, the channel will find and explore the lives of characters who have experienced hate in their own lives and have emerged from that experience transformed to spread a positive message.

The look at extremism will culminate on May 2, 2020, with America On Fire, where Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Charlie Leduff goes deep inside the American militia movement to uncover their roots, motivations and goals, in an increasingly polarized world.

In this challenging time of social distancing, HISTORY DStv 186 remains committed to bringing viewers the best in storytelling with local commissions, documentaries, factual re-enactments, award-winning specials and series.