The Mali empire began as a small Mandinka kingdom at the upper reaches of the Niger River, centred around the town of Niani. During the 11th and 12th centuries it began to develop as an empire following the decline of the Ghana Empire to the north. During this period, trade routes shifted southward to the savanna, stimulating the growth of states.
What Do you have to trade people from the north? I Have Gold
I have salt to trade.
Sundiata Keita was the first ruler. Sundiata Keita was a warrior-prince of the Keita dynasty who was asked to free Mali people from the rule of the king of the Sosso Empire, Soumaoro Kante. By deafeting Sosso in 1235 gave the Mali Empire access to the trans-Saharan trade routes. When Sundiata Keita died the following kings were referred to by the title mansa.
I am Sundieta Kieta The warrior prince of the Kieta dynasy