5. Nyami Nyami (The Zambezi River God)
Nyami Nyami, also referred to as the “Zambezi Snake Spirit,” is an important god of the Tonga tribe in southern Zambia. They believe that Nyami Nyami protects them from harm and gives them sustenance in difficult times. In traditional folktales, Nyami Nyami is depicted as a snake-like creature with a snake-like torso and the head of a fish.
The Tonga people regard Nyami Nyami as the god of Zambezi Valley and believe he controls life in and on the Zambezi River. The construction of Kariba Dam on the valley in 1955 is said to have angered him, hence the numerous deaths and floods experienced in the area at the time of the construction.