A tribal treasure that survives
The Pende (also known as Bapende, Masangi or Pindi, among others) are the Bantu people who live mainly in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. There are an estimated 250,000 today. Their ancestors come from Angola, from where they emigrated due to the expansion of the Lunda in the 17th century.
The pende are known for their music, based on xylophones, dances with ritual masks made of raffia and their wonderful costumes. Their masks represent different things: the pumbu symbolize the power of the chief with faces that inspire terror, the kiwoyo are for the chiefs, they wear headdresses and symbolize an ancestor; and the kipoko are used in the rites of passage.