The Yao people, Wayao, are a major ethnic and linguistic group based at the southern end of Lake Malawi, which played an important part in the history of East Africa during the 19th century. The Yao are a predominantly Muslim people group of about 2 million spread over three countries, Malawi, Mozambique and Tanzania. The Yao people have a strong cultural identity, which transcend the national borders. When Arabs arrived on the east coast of Africa they began trading with the Yao people, mainly slaves and ivory, in exchange for clothes and guns. Because of their involvement in this coastal trade they became one of the richest and most influential tribes in Southern Africa. Large Yao kingdoms came into being as mighty Yao chiefs took control of the Niassa province of Mozambique in the...'
Contributions by Camarinha, Kwamikagami, and Miguel in Portugal.