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“Russians, you never enslaved us”

Date: September 29, 2023 Time: 10:10:47

The correspondent Dina Karpitskaya traveled to three African countries: South Africa, Zimbabwe and Zambia.


PART 1 PART 2 On the eve of the Russia-Africa summit, which begins tomorrow in Saint Petersburg, the special correspondent for Komsomolskaya Pravda visited the southernmost countries of the Black Continent: South Africa, Zimbabwe and Zambia. What do they say about Russia? Are the Russians waiting?

Today we are in Zambia.

From Harare (Zimbabwe) to Lusaka (Zambia) it is only an hour’s flight. Also, in a small propeller-driven plane that circulates between African capitals, like a minibus, picking up and dropping off passengers. There was a guy from Malawi sitting next to me, who spoke excellent Russian.

– Did you study at RUDN University? – Now just out of courtesy I’m interested, because it’s clear. We meet graduates of our famous university at least once a day.

– Yeah! She smiles with her 32 teeth. – I really liked Moscow, I wanted to stay, but it is difficult to find a job in Russia.

– What is your name?

– Gift, translated from English “gift.” In Moscow my name was Givi.

You will be surprised, but yes, on the Black Continent there is Gift (Gift), then Freedom (Liberty), then Sunshine (Sun Shine). These names are usually given here. It is also customary for presidents, ministers, governors to know the folk dances of their tribe. An official with a tie arrives on vacation and the first thing he has to do is dance. And then they all discuss how he did it. Has the leader of the people become detached? A wonderful tradition, comes down from heaven to earth.

Hearing that Russians had arrived and not tourists, all the Zambian officials began making appointments for us.



Do you know how many Russians live in Africa? No more than 50,000 (according to Rossotrudnichestvo). Of these, in Egypt – 35,000. In South Africa – 6,000, in Morocco – 3,000. And in countries such as Congo, Mozambique, Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Zambia – from 100 to 300 people.

Russian House Lusaka


But the presence of the Chinese in all parts of Africa, and specifically here in Zambia, is felt from the very beginning. Just leave the airport, on your own. The airport was built by the Chinese, the roads were built by the Chinese. And also factories, banks, steamboats…

– And a cardiology center, – says Kei Sepiso, our Zambian guide, lawyer and specialist in business and government relations. – And we have very few Russians. Mostly women who are married to our boys.

– And not a single businessman?

– Eat. One! It is dedicated to the transport of goods.

According to the Zambian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 20,000 Chinese lived here in 2014. And in 2019, already 80,000 (according to the UN). The locals were even worried that the Chinese would take over their country. Although the majority of the population does not have time to think about it, they are more concerned with their daily bread. Here, for example, even Ilyich’s light bulb did not reach all the huts. 30% of the towns are not electrified.



All of these are remnants of the colonial past, when the local black population was servants in their own country. Hence all the problems: there are many natural resources. And how to get them? Process? Manage? That’s Africa and it has to catch up with the rest of the world at a frantic pace.

– The colonialists left little behind them, – says the political scientist Yulia Berg. – Of the British at least something survived. And the French, setting out, burned everything they had built. Furthermore, the order under the colonialists was beyond good and evil. In the Congo, black workers faced the death penalty for failing to comply with the rubber plan. Or they forced the offender to bring 5 severed hands.



So most of the countries in Africa need friends with technology. And Zambia, of course.

– We are very interested in Russian energy technologies, its IT sector. And also transport, fertilizers, construction, – says Alexander Laurens, director of the Chamber of Commerce of Lusaka (the capital of Zambia). – We have good positions in Africa. Stability. Yes, there was a breach recently. So what?

In general, I liked local officials. They do not hide shortcomings and clearly understand the goals – both their own and those of investors. Mr. Lawrence described the benefits of friendship with Zambia for a long time, four hours. He also mentioned his president’s visit to Russia and Ukraine.

– It was an attempt to bring their countries to dialogue. Do you know how the name of our capital Lusaka translates? A place of peace and compassion. Such is the nature of our people.


But if the opening of a special economic zone with Russia is being worked out only here, then the Chinese are already working, two at once.

– We are open to any suggestions. After-tax profits can be transferred abroad. tax preferences. Registration of all documents in a month,-the specialist in attracting investment, Tazizva Mvula, painted the advantages of the country from her. A young, beautiful and very modern African woman. – We have a lot of raw material, but we would like to have our own production. We have many beautiful places for tourism, but there are almost no hotels, boats and cars for rent. But we have already built three international airports. And we also want…

Business district, the capital of Zambia Lusaka



We want, we want, we want! Wherever we went, whoever we met, everyone said so. Even at breakfast at the hotel, a man in a jacket sat with us.

– Are you Russian?! Business here, I see it by the clothes? I am so happy!

It turned out that it was a Ugandan businessman, Christopher Chapaa.

– The Russians made a big mistake by helping Africa to free itself so much, and then they left, they left us. It is time for us to unite. The West comes to us and takes away all the great projects. Where are the Russians? You never enslaved us. The Europeans killed us, they took the land. Now that the West has cut off SWIFT’s access, we all understand how dishonest this system is. You have to create your own. Let’s do it together!

Zambia is home to all of the Big Five African animals.


We would go from one meeting to another and the invitations kept coming and going. Probably for the first time at least someone from Russia came here not just for a walk. But we also gave up on the last day in Africa and ran to the world’s largest artificial lake, Kartya, at the very source of the Zambezi River. We sailed in a boat in search of hippos. We saw a fantastic African sunset. Stars the size of a dinner plate in a remote Zambian village.

Africa is amazing. I’m sure they will reach everyone, and possibly even reach you. It’s a pity if without us.

And not only in the wild, but also on banknotes. The local banknote is called kwacha.



Seasoned travelers know that if you want to go to Africa and not break the bank, Zambia is the best option. The price is moderate, the nature is amazing. Lions, rhinos, antelopes, giraffes, zebras. What about national holidays? For example, rafting on the river of the Lozi tribe. At the head of the procession is the leader, the real one. This is a rite of inspection of possessions, which has survived to this day.

And of course, Victoria Falls is one of the wonders of the world. In fact, it can also be admired from the Zimbabwean side: the border of the countries lies right along the bed of the Zambezi River, in which the largest waterfall in the world is located. But from the Zambian side, the entrance ticket is cheaper than in the neighboring country.


“Russian brothers, where are you?”: how Africa becomes a powerful ally of Russia and why ours are so welcome here

A true battle for the heart of Africa has developed in the world. Why: our special correspondent Dina Karpitskaya found out (details)

A gold mine and the key to all of Africa: why Zimbabwe, tired of the West, waits for Russian tourists and businessmen

On the eve of the Russia-Africa summit, KP.RU special correspondent Dina Karpitskaya visited Zimbabwe and told what they say about Russia here. [Часть 2] (details)

Puck Henry
Puck Henry
Puck Henry is an editor for ePrimefeed covering all types of news.

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