Mesaka

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A language of Cameroon

Alternate Names
Banagere, Iyon, Messaga, Messaga-Ekol, Messaka
Population

14,000 (1982 SIL).

Location

South West Region, Manyu division, on Nigeria border northeast of Akwaya, isolated.

Language Status

6a (Vigorous).

Dialects

Batomo (Babasi). Batomo dialect may be a separate language, or may be the same as Motomo (Oliti, Matchi), a dialect of Iceve-Maci [bec]. Lexical similarity: 70% with Tiv [tiv].

Typology

SVO; noun head initial; 12 noun classes; tonal; 25 consonant phonemes; 8 vowel phonemes.

Language Use

All ages. Also use Cameroon Pidgin [wes], Tiv [tiv].

Writing

Unwritten [Qaax].

Other Comments

Ethnic autonym: Ugare, Mesaka is used by the government, Iyon by the Tiv. Traditional religion.