Real Name: Waku
Identity/Class: Normal human
Occupation: Chief of the Bantu
Affiliations: Lalei (his girlfriend/ lover)
Known Relatives: Kaba (father, deceased)
Base of Operations: the Bantu nation, somewhere in South Africa, unspecified time (probably 19th or early 20th century)
First Appearance: Jungle Tales I #1 (Atlas, September 1954)
Powers/Abilities: Skilled fighter, knowledgeable in jungle survival.
History: (Jungle Tales I #1-7) Waku was a prince of the Bantu nation, who made a promise to his dying father to forever abstain from force and violence and ensure peace for their people. This promise cost him the leadership of the Bantu, as he had to refuse ritual combat designed to prove his abilities and right to rule the Bantu. Control was seized by the ambitious Mabu, who ordered the Bantu to work as hunters for white men. While his people toiled under terrible conditions, Mabu swiftly became rich. On the first month's anniversary of the death of the old chief, Waku's lover Lalei informed the tribe of the reasons for Waku's refusal to fight; realising Waku was not a coward, the Bantu tried to remove Mabu. Waku, who had been watching proceedings from a hidden vantage point, intervened, and challenged his usurper to a fight. Mabu died when Waku threw him into the campfire, by when the Bantu tried to make him their chief once more, he informed them of his intention to follow Mabu into the flames as penance for breaking his oath to his father. Lalei informed him that she would join him in death rather than be parted, but then a vision of his father manifested in the flames, and freed him from his promise. Waku became the new Prince of the Bantu, and together with Lalei ruled his people wisely, defending them from many enemies.
Comments: Thanks to Jess Nevins for allowing me to use information from his excellent Golden Age Heroes Directory and his Guide to Golden Age Marvel Characters. Thanks also to Richard Boucher & Darrin Wiltshire @ PR-Publications for permission to use information from their equally brilliant collection of Golden Age Sites, PR Publications. Their knowledge of Golden Age characters far outstrips my own.
Any Additions/Corrections? Please let me know.
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