Centuries ago, the Banta Themne people crossed the Guinea border and settled in the Buya-Romende chiefdom of Sierra Leone. No one is certain why they left Guinea. Many believe it was because of the historic Mali invasion of that area. Others believe there may have been tribal wars that forced the exodus. Still others conclude that trade caused the energetic Banta Themne to push their tribe eastward. Whatever the reason, the Banta Themne established themselves in the northern province of Sierra Leone, bringing with them their traditional African beliefs as well as their Islamic faith.
Today the Banta Themne people live in the rural bush area of the West African nation of Sierra Leone. There are 159 villages, and up until recently not one New Testament church among them.
Several chiefs govern various the Banta Themne groups, but there is only one paramount chief, and he rules them all. The paramount Chief was living in Freetown for a time, because ten years of civil war in Sierra Leone had driven him from his home in the village of Kamasundu. Many Banta Themne people were living in displacement camps around the Port Loko area during the war.
By January 2002, the Banta Themne had returned to their villages in the Buya-Romende chiefdom, and the Paramount Chief had returned to Kamasundu.
|Profile Source: West Africa Gateway|
|People Name General||Temne-Banta|
|People Name in Country||Temne-Banta|
|Population in Sierra Leone||57,000|
|Progress Scale||1.1 ●|
|GSEC||1 (per PeopleGroups.org)|
|Alternate Names||Banta Mende, Banta Temne, Banta Themne, Buya-Romende Buya-Romende|
|Region||West and Central Africa|
|Persecution Rank||Not ranked|
|Location in Country||Northern Province, west of Sewa River to Little Scarcie. Source: Ethnologue 2010|
|Primary Language:||Themne (57,000 speakers)|
|Language Code:||tem Ethnologue Listing|
|For Primary Language:||Themne|
|Bible Translation ▲||Status (Years)|
|Bible Portions||Yes (1865-1993)|
|New Testament||Yes (1868-1992)|
|Possible Print Bibles|
|Forum of Bible Agencies|
|World Bible Finder|
|Resource Type ▲||Resource Name|
|Audio Recordings||Audio Bible teaching (GRN)|
|Audio Recordings||Online New Testament (FCBH)|
|Film / Video||Jesus Film: view in Themne|
|Film / Video||Story of Jesus for Children (JF Project)|
|Text / Printed Matter||World Missionary Press Booklets|
|Major Religion ▲||Percent|
|Christianity (Evangelical 0.00 %)||
|Other / Small||
|Christian Segments ▲||Percent|