Chinese Filmmaker Charged Over Racist Videos of Malawian Children

Lu Ke is accused of selling videos of children chanting racist messages in Mandarin Chinese that they didn’t understand, such as “I'm a black monster”.
Dipo Faloyin
London, GB
​Lu Ke
Lu Ke. Screenshot via BBC Africa Eye

A Chinese filmmaker has been charged with five counts of child trafficking after he was accused last month of filming videos of young Malawian children reciting racist messages. 

Lu Ke was the subject of a recent BBC investigation that found the filmmaker made the children chant derogatory messages in Mandarin Chinese that they didn’t understand, such as “I'm a black monster. My IQ is low”.  Lu Ke then sold these videos on Chinese social media for up to £55 ($70, €65). 

Advertisement

Lu Ke, 26, who has denied the allegations, fled Malawi into neighbouring Zambia, where he was eventually arrested for entering the country illegally. On Saturday, the filmmaker was extradited back to Malawi before appearing at the Lilongwe Magistrate Court on Monday where he was formally charged. 

The Malawian foreign ministry claims the Chinese government helped find the filmmaker in Zambia. 

“Through cooperating with both the government of the People’s Republic of China and the government of the Republic of Zambia, the Malawi government established Mr Lu Ke had fled to Zambia using unchartered routes,” Malawi’s attorney general, General Thabo Chakaka Nyirenda, said in a statement. 

“Following this development, the Malawi government, through cooperation among ministries of homeland security, justice and foreign affairs, reached out to the Zambian government to request the extradition of Mr Lu Ke.”

High-profile incidents of anti-Black racism carried out by Chinese people have been highlighted in recent years, such as arbitrary COVID isolation for Black people in some parts of China.  

According to local reports, Lu Ke, who spoke through a translator, appeared in court without a lawyer. The court is expected to rule soon on whether he will be granted bail.