2,280,000 in South Africa (2013 UNSD), increasing. L2 users: 3,400,000 in South Africa (Webb 2002). Total users in all countries: 8,479,000 (as L1: 5,079,000; as L2: 3,400,000).
Northern and Mpumalanga provinces.
1 (National). Statutory national language (1996, Constitution, Article 6(1)).
Luleke (Xiluleke), Gwamba (Gwapa), Changana (Xichangana), Hlave, Kande, N’walungu (Shingwalungu), Xonga (Ssonga), Jonga (Dzonga), Nkuna, Songa, Nhlanganu (Shihlanganu). ‘Tsonga’ is used to describe Changana [tso], Tswa [tsc], and Ronga [rng], although often used interchangeably with Changana, the most prestigious of the 3. All are recognized as languages, although inherently intelligible.
Christian, traditional religion.