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A language of Benin

Alternate Names
Baseca, Basila, Bassila, Gisida, “Ouinji-Ouinji” (pej.), “Winji-Winji” (pej.)
Population

33,600 in Benin (2011 SIL), increasing. Population total all countries: 45,900.

Location

Northwest Donga Department, Bassila commune, on Togo border, and 18 area villages. Also in Togo.

Language Maps
Language Status

6a (Vigorous).

Dialects

Agerendebu ka gija (Agéréndébou), Frinyio ka gija (Frignion), Gibayaakuja (Bayaku), Gibodija (Bodi), Giborokoja (Mboroko), Gideenguja (Dengou), Gifolanga (Guiguisso), Gikodowarja (Kodowari), Gipenelanja (Pénélan), Gipenesulja (Pénéssoulou), Gisaramangaja (Saramanga), Giseda (Bassila), Naagayili ka gija (Nagayilé), Ngmeelang ka gija (Melan), Yaari ka gija (Yarí). Giseda is the main dialect that adults understand. Higher intelligibility among the dialects in the north. Lexical similarity: 89% with the Bodi dialect and 74% with the Balanka dialect.

Typology

SVO; 14 noun classes; 23 consonant phonemes; tonal

Language Use

Vigorous. All domains. All ages. Positive attitudes. Also use French [fra], Tem [kdh], or Ede Nago [nqg]. Varies with education level.

Language Development
Literacy efforts since 1980. Poetry. Magazines. Radio programs. Dictionary.
Writing
Latin script, developed in 1975.
Other Comments

Muslim.

Also spoken in:

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