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African expats explore China-Gabon friendship

ALMS|Updated: November 24, 2021

An expat tries her hand at playing an African drum. [Video/Wenzhou Overseas Media Center]

A group of over 10 expats from Ghana, Zimbabwe, Zambia, and Tanzania recently visited the China-Gabon Friendship Hall in Lucheng district, Wenzhou, East China's Zhejiang province, getting a deeper understanding of Chinese and African cultures.

The hall, which is located in Yiyang village of Shanfu town, neighbors the ancestral residence of Jean Ping, the former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Gabon, the President of the 59th UN General Assembly, and the president of the African Union Commission. Ping was born in Gabon in 1942 as the son of Cheng Zhiping, an overseas Chinese with Wenzhou ancestry. Ping's mother was the daughter of a Gabonese tribal chief. The ancestral residence is a typical late Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) building that consists of a gate, a wing room, and a main house.

The expats learned about how Cheng had traveled all the way from China to Europe and Africa, striving to make a living and finally settling in Gabon. They also learned about Ping's diplomatic activities and concepts, as well as the details of Ping's several visits to Wenzhou.

The expats took part in various African cultural immersion activities, such as playing African drums and trying African dances accompanied by traditional melodies.

Elly, a Tanzanian volunteer of the Wenzhou Overseas Media Center, said that he was glad to see that the China-Gabon friendship has been steady and longstanding. He added that he appreciated having the opportunity to get a deeper understanding of African culture in Wenzhou and hoped to pay more visits to the hall with his partners. Elly is a junior student majoring in civil engineering at Wenzhou University.

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