LETTER:Justified anger seen in black Briton's play

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The Independent Online
From Mr John Faulls

Sir: The black British writer Shango Baku has written the play Zumbi, which includes an attack on the slave trade. It is as well to remember that Africans were implicated in the slave trade, too.

The slave ship captains did not sail from Liverpool and London to the west coast of Africa, round up Africans, and sail to the West Indies to sell them in exchange for sugar. They took British goods on the outward journey and exchanged them for slaves, who were sold by their own chieftains to the slave ship captains. The slaves then crossed the Atlantic in appalling conditions and were sold in the West Indies in exchange for the produce of the plantations.

William Wilberforce and other Englishmen campaigned for a long time against this vile trade, which was eventually made illegal by the British parliament in 1807.

In 1834, slavery was abolished in British colonies, but it took the Americans another 30 years to abolish it in the US.

Arabs were still trading in slaves in the 1870s, and the British Navy was largely responsible for bringing this to an end.

Yours faithfully,

John Faulls

Portsmouth

7 July

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