Konzo

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A language of Uganda

Alternate Names
Bakonzo, Bayira, Konjo, Lhukonzo, Olukonjo, Olukonzo, Rukonjo
Population

851,000 (2014 census), increasing. Census based on tribal affiliation.

Location

Southwest, Ruwenzori mountains, Kasese, Kabarole, Ntoroko, and Bundibugyo districts; Olhughendera dialect: Bundibugyo district.

Language Status

5 (Developing).

Dialects

Sanza (Ekisanza), Rukonzo (Rukonjo), Lusongora, Olhughendera. Nande [nnb] (Kinande) in Democratic Republic of the Congo and Konzo [koo] (Lukonzo) in Uganda are 2 varieties of the same language. Nande [nnb] is influenced by French [fra] and Swahili [swh]; Konzo [koo] by Tooro [ttj]. Lexical similarity: 77% with Nande [nnb].

Language Use

Home, market. All ages. Positive attitudes.

Language Development
Taught in primary schools. Literature. Radio. Dictionary. Texts. Bible portions: 1914. Agency: Kikinzo Language and Culture Office.
Writing

Latin script [Latn], used since 1914.

Other Comments

Konzo (Bakonzo) in Uganda and Nande (Banande) in Democratic Republic of the Congo both feel very much one people, ethnic autonym: Bayira. They believe they originated from the Ruwenzori Mountains; the mountains belong to them and they to the mountains. This plays a very important role in their traditions and identity. Lusongora is the most important dialect. Traditional religion, Christian.

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