200,000 (1994 SIL).
Bas-Uele province: Aketi, Bambesa, Bondo, and Buta territories; Tshopo province: Banalia territory; Nord-Ubangi province: northeastern, on Ubangi river, Buta is center; Bas-Uele province: Aketi and Bondo territories (Benge and Bati dialects), Tshopo province: Banalia territory (Kiba dialect).
Leboa-Le, Yewu, Kiba, Benge, Bati (Baati). Lexical similarity: 90% with Benge and Bati dialects, 80%–85% with Pagibete [pae], 60%–80% with Kango [kty], 60%–65% with Ngelima [agh], 55%–60% with Lika [lik], 48% with Komo [kmw], 43% with Bali [bcp], 37% with Ngombe [ngc], 35% with Budza [bja], 30% with Lingala [lin].
Some noun classes have suffixes in addition to the usual prefixes.
Also use Lingala [lin] (Boone and Olson 2004).
Latin script [Latn].
Buta and Bambesa territories have similar dialects. Clan names: Bangingita, Bagunzulu, Bokipa. Different from Bua [bub] of Chad.