Popokabaka lies on the right bank of the river Kwango River. Francis Dhanis, an agent of the Congo Free State, established a station here around 1890. The territory of Popokabaka borders with Angola in the southwest. For a long time Popokabaka was the commercial center for trade with Portuguese traders who were selling essential items and buying local products. The military post at Popokabaka was used to control the flow of rubber into Portuguese Congo.