Bebe in Cameroon

Joshua Project has identified the Bebe only in Cameroon





Largest Religion

Main Language


Where Are they Located?

Isolated in the hilly North West Province near the Nigerian border. Only Sabongida can be reached by vehicle and then only during the dry season when the river is low, since there is no bridge. All other locations can only be reached by trekking from one to two hours one-way.

What Are Their Lives Like?

English is the language of wider communication for the area. It is also used daily by the Bebe, expecially among the youth, mainly to communicate with non-Bebe speakers. Bebe-speakers learn Kemezung and Nsari, the neighboring and most closely related of the Eastern Beboid languages, due to frequent contact with these speakers. The level of comprehension of these other languages, however, is in the marginal range. It varies with the amount of contact.

When asked, the people expressed a positive interest in learning to read and write their own language. They also want their children to learn it. The people of Bebe-Jama stated that they would like to be able to send a letter to a friend and have it understood. They are also open to becoming literate in Kemezung or Nsari. Adult literacy percentages are assumed to be low due to the low educational level. 60-75% of children attend primary school, but very few go on to secondary school due to poverty and distance. Very few secondary schools are available to them.

Buildings are made of mud brick, some thatched roofs especially in the eastern villages. There is no electricity available. One must trek to get to the villages.

What Are Their Beliefs?

Religiously, the two Bebe villages differ in profile. Bebe-Jama claims that the largest religious group in their village consists of followers of traditional religion and that Muslims form the next largest group. They consider the Christians to be few. In Bebe-Jatto, however, there are many Christians and only a few Muslims and followers of traditional religion. In both villages there are three Christian denominations: Baptist, Presbyterian, and Catholic. Baptists form the largest group in Bebe-Jatto. With the exception of a Catholic cathechist in Sabongida (which is a neighboring of Bebe-Jatto), we interviewed no other religious leaders in either village. So we cannot say what potential for cooperation might exist among the various Christians to translate the Bible into Bebe.

What Are Their Needs?

Recordings of the Biblical accounts might be a way to reach this people through Pidgin or through the mother tongue. No forms of Gospel presentations exist in the heart language at present.

What Kind Of Missionaries Are Needed? Someone to produce recordings of Biblical accounts for this predominantly oral culture.

A health clinic is needed.

Prayer Points

* Pray for spiritual growth in the church and that all Bebe-speakers will have an opportunity to understand and be reached with the Gospel.
* Pray that those who are Christians would remain strong in the face of African Traditional Religion.

Profile Source:   Joshua Project  

Expanded PDF Profile

People Name General Bebe
People Name in Country Bebe
Population in Cameroon 4,000
World Population 4,000
Countries 1
Progress Scale 2.2
Least-Reached No
Indigenous Yes
Alternate Names
Affinity Bloc Sub-Saharan Peoples
People Cluster Benue
People Name General Bebe
Ethnic Code NAB56b
People ID 10750
Country Cameroon
Region West and Central Africa
Continent Africa
10/40 Window No
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Location in Country North West Province, Donga-Mantung Division, Misaje Subdivision, west of Nkambe and north of Ring Road, Bebe-Jama and Bebe-Jatto villages.   Source:  Ethnologue 2010

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Enthologue Language Map

Languages & Dialects on file:  1  (up to 20 largest shown)
Naami: Bebe (4,000)
Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Naami: Bebe 4,000
For Primary Language: Naami

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible Portions No
New Testament No
Complete Bible No
Resource Format
Audio Bible teaching (GRN) Audio Recordings
Primary Religion: Christianity
Religion Subdivision: Roman Catholic

Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.40 %)
61.00 %
Ethnic Religions
39.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %

Christian Segments Percent
0.0 %
0.0 %
0.0 %
Other Christian
23.0 %
1.0 %
Roman Catholic
76.0 %
Profile Source: Joshua Project  
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more

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