A language of Cameroon

Alternate Names
Babinga, Bebayaga, Bebayaka, Bibaya, Pygmees Baka, Pygmees de l’Est

40,000 in Cameroon (2007 Y. Léonard). 15,000 monolinguals. Mainly women. Ethnic population: 40,000. Total users in all countries: 43,200.


East region: Boumba, Kadey, Ngoko, and Upper Nyong divisions; South region: Dja-and-Lobo division.

Language Status

6a (Vigorous).

Language Use

The Baka, being pygmies, are held in low esteem by the Bantus. East Region population increase among all language groups and Baka sedentism increase bilingualism. Most domains, including home, education, and forest. Used by all. Positive attitudes. Some also use French [fra], especially with outsiders and also in schools. Also use Koonzime [ozm], Njyem [njy].

Language Development

Literacy rate in L1: Below 5%. Literacy rate in L2: 5% in French [fra]. In small, dispersed villages, which makes literacy difficult. Taught in primary schools. Used in 3 villages. Dictionary. Grammar. Bible portions: 1996.


Latin script [Latn], not used in Gabon.

Other Comments

Semi-nomadic but encouraged by the government to settle along roadways. Different from Baka of Democratic Republic of the Congo and Sudan and from the Aka [soh] (Baaka, Bayaka, Biyaka). Although similar in culture, they are different in language. Traditional religion, Christian.

Also spoken in:

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