Afrikan Language

Language Families
There are several thousand languages spoken in the world, however it is estimated that about 100 account for 95% of the world's population. Languages can be grouped together into families on the basis of similarities of vocabulary and grammatical structure. It has been suggested that languages in the same family have common origins or antecedents. Languages families are divided into branches or sub-groups. For example, some of the branches of the Indo-European language family include the Indo-Iranian languages, the Romance languages, the Germanic languages (which include English) and the Celtic languages. Similarly, the Semitic languages form a sub-group of the Afro-Asiatic language family, and the Bantu languages form a sub-group of the Niger-Congo language family.

Languages of Africa

Indigenous African languages, families and

North Africa and the Horn of Africa

Arabic and other languages in the Afro-Asiatic or Hamito-Semitic language family.
West Africa, Central Africa and Southern Africa.

The languages belong to the Niger-Congo family., which can be sub-divided into several branches or sub-group.

The main ones are: -

Mande, West Atlantic (both spoken in West Africa)

Gur, (spoken in Northern Ghana, Upper Volta, Togo and Mali)

Kwa, (includes most of the languages of Nigeria, except Hausa, and many of the languages of Ghana, Togo and Benin

Benu-Congo, (covering some Bantoid languages spoken in Nigeria and the Bantu languages spoken south of a line stretching from the Cameroons in the west to Kenya in the east.

Sudan and the Sahara

Smaller language families: -

Chari-Nile or Macro-Sudanic group.

Khoisan or Clicl languages (which include Bushman, Hottentot and Hatsu).

Island of Malagassy

A Polynesian language is spoken.

In addition to these indigenous African languages, European languages (such as English and French) are widely used and constitute the official language of some African countries, although they may be the mother tongue of only a small proportion of the inhabitants. Finally there are sizeable minorities speaking Indian languages in Some East African countries.

Main language families.

Languages and sub-groups.


Indo-European Includes: - Most of the languages of Europe, India Pakistan, Bangladesh and Iran. Subgroups include: - Indo-Iranian, Romance, Germanic Slavic, Celtic and Hellenic languages. Largest language family Spoken by about half the, world’s population
Sino-Tibetan Includes : - Chinese, Burmese, Thai and Lao Forms second largest group
Niger-Congo. Includes: - large group of Bantu languages spoken in Central, East and Southern Africa and most of the languages spoken in West Africa (known as the West Sudanic sub-group). Main family of African of languages
Afro-Asiatic or
Includes: - the subgroup of Semitic languages such as Arabic, Hebrew and Amharic, the Berber languages, the Cushitic laguages (e.g. Somali,Galla) spoken in the Horn of Africa,and Hausa which forms part of the Chadic sub-group. y
Malayo-Polynesian Includes: - Malay, Indonesian, the languages of the Philippines, Melanesia and Polynesia g
Dravidian Consists of: - mainly South Indian languages such as Tamil and Teluga y
Altaic Includes: - Turkish, Mongolian and various languages spoken in Central Soviet Asia g
Uralic Includes: - Hungarian and Finnish, as well as some languages spoken in Central European Russia y
Chari-Nile Includes: - languages spoken in Sudan, Uganda, Kenya and Chad g
Mon-Khmer Includes: - Khmer National language of Kampuchea y


Language Where spoken Context
Arabic North Africa An Afro-Asiatic or Hamito-Semitic language.
Abua River States, Nigeria.
Acholi Uganda A Nilotic language
Afrikaans South Africa Developed from Dutch, an Indo- European language
Akan Ghana, Ivory Coast Sometimes called "Twi-Fante". It is both a language and a dialect of Twi- Fante. It is a member of the Niger- Congo family.
Ambo Northern Namibia and Angola The language of the Ovambo people. It is a Bantu language and belongs to the Congo family.
Amharic Ethiopia The National Language of Ethiopia. It is a Semitic language and belongs to theHamito-Semitic language family. It is written in the Ethiopic or Amharic script.
Arabic Morocco, Tunisia, Libya, Algeria, Morocco, Egypt, Sudan and Northern Chad The official language of Morocco, Tunisia, Libya, Algeria, Egypt and the Sudan. Also spoken on other continents.
Asante Ghana An Akan dialect, it is sometimes called Ashanti.
Bariba Togo, Benin and Nigeria It belongs to the Gur branch of the Niger-Congo family of languages.
Bassa Cameroons and Central West Africa A Bantu Language.
Bemba Tanzania High Commission A Bantu language, part of the Niger- Congo family.
Berber Morocco and Algeria A group of very similar languages, which form a branch of the Hamito- Semitic language family.
Buli Congo (Brazzaville) and Central African Republic. A Bantu language.
Che Ghana and Togol A Dialect of Tobote, a Gur language
Dagari Northern Ghana A Gur language
Dagbane Northern Ghana and Togo Belongs to the Gur branch of the Niger-Congo family of languages.
Dari Chad A Chadic language and part of the Hamito-Semitic language family.
Dinka Sudan and Ethiopia A group of related Chari-Nile or Nilotic languages.
Edo Nigeria, the Niger River Delta A member of the Niger-Congo family of languages.
Efik The town of Calabar in Nigeria Also known as Ibibio. A member of the Niger-Congo family of languages.
English Mauritius and the Seychelles The official language.
Emai Nigeria Belongs to the Niger-Congo family of languages.
Ewe ESouth-Eastern Ghana, Togo and Benin Togo A member of the Niger-Congo family of languages.
Fang Southern Cameroons, Equatorial Guinea, and northern Gabon. A Bantu language.
Fante Ghana, in the forest area west of the Volta river. Closely related to Twi, regarded by linguists as a dialect of the same language called "Twi-Fante" or Akan.
Fon Southern Benin A member of the Kwa branch of the Niger-Congo language family.
French The Central African Republic, Chad, Congo (Brazzaville), Benin, Gabon, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal, Togo, Upper Volta, and Zaire. Burundi, Cameroons, Malagasy Republic, and Rwanda.

The official language.

One of the official languages, for some mother tongue and for others a second language

French Creole Muaritius and the Seychelles. Spoken widely although English is the official language.
Fulani ZNorthern Nigeria, Mali and Mauritania A member of the Niger-Congo family of languages.
Ga Coastal area of Accra, Ghana Zimbabwe House, 429 Strand
Gane Burkina Faso Belongs to the Gur branch of the Niger-Congo family of languages.
Galla Ethiopia and north-eastern Kenya Also called Oromo. It is a Cushitic language and a member of the Hamito-Semitic language family.
Gogo Kenya and Tanazania A Bantu language.
Guan Ghana Also known as Gonja. It is a Volta-Comoe language.
Gurage Ethiopia Three Semitic languiages:- Central West Gurage, East Gurage and Peripheral West Gurage. Harari is a dialect of East Gurage.
Gurma Northern Ghana and Togo, and in Upper Volta, eastern Ghana. A member of the Gur branch of the Niger-Congo language family.
Hausa Northern Nigeria and Niger It belongs to the Chadic sub-group of the Hamito-Semitic language family.
Ibo East central State of Nigeria Also known as Igbo. It is a member of the Niger-Congo language family.
Idoma Benue Plateau State in Nigeria A member of the Kwa sub-group Niger-Congo language family.
Igbira Mid Western State Nigeria Also known as Ebira. Niger-Congo language.
Ijo Niger River Delta Also known as Ijaw. Ijo dialects include Kalabari, Nembe and Okrika.
Ishan Benin province of Nigeria A language related to Edo.
Kache East Africa A Bantu language.
Kamba Kenya A Bantu language
Katab Zaria province in Nigeria Also called Tyap or Atyap. A Niger-Congo language
Khana Ogoni diversions of Rivers State in Nigeria
Kikuyu Kenya One of the major languages of Kenya. A Bantu language.
Komoro Central East Africa Kingwana is one of the dialects of Komoro.
Kongo Zaire, Angola and Congo (Kikongo) - A Bantu language.
Kono Liberia, Mali and Sierre Leone It belongs to the Mande branch of the Niger-Congo language family.
Kpelle Liberia and Guinea It belongs to the Mande branch of the Niger-Congo language.
Kposo Togo, near the border with Ghana A Kwa language and part of the Niger-Congo language family.
Krio Sierre Leone and Gambia An English based Creole. The home language of many people in Sierre Leone and Gambia. Aku is a Krior dialect used in Gambia.
Kru Liberia and the Ivory Coast A Niger-Congo language.
Kuma Tanzania, Kenya and Uganda Also known as Arusha. A Bantu language.
Lamnso Bamenda prefecture of Cameroons. A Bantoid language, belonging to the Niger-Congo language family.
Limba Sierre Leone and Guinea A member of the West Atlantic branch of the Niger-Congo language family.
Lingala Zaire and Congo (Brazzaville) Also known as Losengo. A Bantu language.
Lozi South-western Zambia A Bantu language.
Luba Zaire A Bantu language.
Luganda Uganda Also known as Ganda. A Bantu language.
Lugwere Central East Africa Also known as Gwere. A Bantu language.
Luo Kenya and Tanzania A Chari-Nile language.
Makua Tanzania, Mozambique and Malawi A Bantu language.
Malinke Senegal, Gambia, Guinea, GuineaBissau, Mali, and Ivory Coast A West African Mande language.
Mambwe Zambia and Tanzania. A Bantu language.
Maragoli Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania and Zaire. Also called Ragoli or Logooli. A Bantu language.
Masaba Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania. A Bantu language. One of the dialects is Lugisu.
Mbo Cameroons, Rio Muni, Gabon, Congo (Brazzaville) and Central African Republic. A Bantu language. Dialects include Bafaw and Bakosi.
Mende Sierre Leone. The most important indigenous language of Sierre Leone. A Member of the Mande branch of the Niger-Congo language family.
Ndebele Southwest Zambia and South Africa. Also known as Matabele. Ndebele is similar to Zulu. It is a Bantu language.
Nkutu Zaire and Congo (Brazzaville). A Bantu language. Kalo is one of the dialects.
Nsenga Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Mozambique. A Bantu language.
Nubian Central Sudan. A member of the Chari-Nile language family.
Nuer Southern Sudan. Chari-Nile or Nilotic language.
Nyang Western Cameroons. Also known as Bayang. A Bantoid language.
Nyanja Malawi and Zambia. A major language of these two countries. In the former it is known as (Chi-) Chewa. It is a Bantu language.
Nyari Central Africa. A Bantu language.
Nzema Central Ghana. Related to Akan. A member of the Niger-Congo language family.
Oku Cameroons. Also known as Ukfwo. A Bantoid language.
Oring Nigeria A Niger-Congo language. Utonkon, a Oring dialect is spoken in Utonkon district,Idoma division of Benue Plateau State
Portuguese Angola, Guinea Bissau and Mozambique. The official language of these countries.
Ruanda Ruanda and Uganda. A Bantu language.
Runyankore Uganda, near the Tanzanian border. A Bantu language.
Rutoro Uganda. Also known as Nyoro or Runyoro. A Bantu language.
Shangaan Mozambique and South Africa. Also known as Tsonga or Tonga. A Bantu language.
Shona Zimbabwe, Botswana and Mozambique. A Bantu language.
Sidamo Ethiopia. Belongs to the Cushitic branch of the Hamito-Semitic language family. Uses Amharic script.
Somali Somalia and Ethiopia. The official language of Somalia. Belongs to Cushitic branch of the Hamito-Semitic language family.
Sotho Republic of South Africa and South Africa. One of the main Bantu languages in Lesotho. Also called Sesotho.
Sukuma Tanzania A Bantu language.
Sukur Cameroons. Also called Shakiri. Belongs to the Chadi sub-group of the Hamito-Semitic language family.
Swahili Tanzania and Kenya. The official language of these two countries. Widely used in East Africa. The mother tongue of many and the second language of many more. A Bantu language but contains words of Arabic origin.
Swazi Swaziland and South Africa A Bantu language.
Tari Zaria province of Nigeria. A Niger-Congo language.
Temne Sierre Leone. Belongs to the West Atlantic branch of the Niger-Congo language family.
Tigre Tigre province of Ethiopia. A Semitic language belonging to the Hamito- Semitic language family.
Tigrinya Tigre and Eritrea province of Ethiopia. A Semitic language. It belongs to the Hamito-Semitic language family.
Tiv Benue province of Nigeria. A Bantiod language
Tooro Central East Africa. A Bantu language
Tswana Botswana and South Africa. Similar to Sotho and sometimes called Western Sotho. A Bantu language.
Tumbuka Northern Malawi. A Bantu language.
Twi Ghana. Together with Fante, to which it is related, the most important language of Ghana
Ukaan In certain villages in Akoko division, Western State, Nigeria.
Ukele South Eastern State, Nigeria. Also called Kukele.
Urhobo Mid-Western state south of Benin city Nigeria. Isoko is an important dialect of Urhobo. A Nigerian Language.
Win Ghana Gur language.
Wolof Senegal and Gambia. Also known as Jolof. A member of the West Atlantic branch of the Niger-Congo language family.
Xhosa Transkei and eastern Cape Province of South Africa. 9Sometimes regarded together with Zulu as a dialect of the language "Nguni". A Bantu language.
Yaunde Cameroons. North Western Bantu language.
Yoruba Nigeria. One of the major languages of Nigeria. Spoken in the south west of Nigeria 
Yunger Nigeria. Roba is a Yunger dialect.
Zulu South Africa. Closely related to Xhosa. Some linguists regard Zulu and Xhosa as Nguni dialects.


You need to be a member of OTEDO.COM to add comments!


Comment by ALEX G. IGBINEWEKA on November 13, 2017 at 1:07am
SWAHILI FOR THE EAST, GUOSA FOR THE WEST AFRICA -- ECOWAS.  The colonial lingua franca monopoly of the indigenous independent Nigeria and the West African nations did not only destabilize and destroy the socio-political and industrial strategies of the countries; it raised data or questions which borders on the basis for cohesion, comprehension, industrial and technological revolution and the unity in such diversity because language plays a unifying role in the beginning, development, beliefs, and customs of any group of people.

The need for an indigenous evolved lingua franca for Nigeria and the Economic Communities of the West African States (ECOWAS) cannot be over emphasized. Experts have pointed out that most people think in the language of their mother land, and that when they speak other languages of no identical parameters to their ethnicity they engaged in transliteration and endless hurdles before the main issues at hand.

Language is a means by which words or expressions find meaning and is put into use. Basically, it is used as a means of giving out information, thoughts, skills, ideas, reasoning and ensures receipt of same from varied sources without. Above all, language is knowledge, and knowledge is POWER to the people, from the people and by the people.

The Guosa Language:

There are about 400 different ethnic languages, dialects and fractional tongues in Nigeria and about twice this number in other West African countries. The Guosa Language evolution covered at least 120 of these divers tongues, with developing rules and grammars for the evolution and integration of all other West African languages, dialects and cultures. The language is made up of carefully detailed units of the different ethnic languages and cultures in West Africa, so that in the future, Nigeria and the West African Regional Countries of Africa should be able to take their positive stand in the communities of lingua franca nations of the world, such as the East Africa, the North Africa, Europe, America, Asia and so on.

Help sponsor or donate for the Guosa Language Train-the-Trainers school project, and lay the building blocks of ECOWAS unity now and in posterity. Contact us at:
Teliwaya: (510) (510) 225-9172 Ext. 1 
Online Donation:


© 2022   Created by Otedo News.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service


Local And International News Outlets
OTEDO.COM New Nigerian Newspaper Los Angeles Times Leadership Newspaper Thisday Vanguard Newspaper 234Next Daily Champion MTN Football Chicago Inquirer PM News National Daily NigeriaHealthWatch News Star Newspaper Desert Herald Sahara Reporters Associated Press Nigeria Liberty Forum,UK AFP Online BBC Nigerian Village Square Telegraph Newspaper Nigerian News Service Newswatch The Guardian Punch Daily Independent Nigerian Tribune The Nation The Sun Coastalnews NewsDiary Online Daily Trust Compass Newspaper CNN SKY Sports Yahoo! News KickOff Nigeria CNET News Reuters United Press International