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The Makoa people are descendants of Bantu slaves, which have been brought from Mozambique to Madagascar by slave traders in the 18th century. Although the Makoa maintain a separate identity, they are often mistaken for Vezo. They live along the northwest coast and constitute about 1% of the population. The Makoa are typically of larger stature than most Malagasy people and were therefore recruited by the French as policemen and soldiers.