Top 10 Most Popular Languages In All Of Africa

Swahili is most widely spoken African language. Swahili is spoken in these countries: Tanzania 99%, Kenya 87%, Uganda 85%, Burundi 55%, Democratic Republic of the Congo 48%, Rwanda 28%, Swahili is also spoken in southern Somalia, Ethiopia and Sudan and northern Mozambique and the Comoros Islands. It has more than 11 million native speakers (speak Swahili as first language) and more than 120 million secondary speakers. That makes Swahili the largest African language.


Arabic is widely spoken in many African countries, but it is naturally not counted as one of African languages even though there’s arabic-africans lives in Africa; it is because most of native African countries has a low percentage of Arabic speakers.

Since almost every African country was at one time a colony, speaking English, Portuguese, or French will also help you communicate. Many Africans will speak Creole or pidgin versions of these European languages and they may not be so easy to understand when you first hear them.

1) Arabic
2) Kiswahili
3) Hausa
4) English
5) Amharic
6) French
7) Oromo
8) Yoruba
9) Igbo
10) Zulu


Written by How Africa


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  1. The African language list is biased as it lists Oromo on 7th and Amharic on 5th. Oromo is spoken by more than 40 million mother tongue (native) speakers (in Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia) and Amharic is spoken by about 29million as mother tongue. Even if native speakers and secondary speakers are added as criteria to make the list Amharic does not have more speakers than Oromo, even though it is imposed as national language in Ethiopia. In most previous such lists, Oromo is listed as the third widely spoken African languages next to Swahili and Hausa. That is why I am say the list is biased in this article. The writer should refer to previous articles on the same topic unless it has conducted a novel ground breaking study to make the current list. Here are previous lists and population of speakers:;;

  2. The list is wrong with all due respect. Where is Fulfulde/Pulaar/Pular (the language of the Fulani people also known as Fula.) There are roughly 30 million speakers of the language from Senegal all the way to Sudan.

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