Sebei in Sudan





Largest Religion

Main Language


Introduction / History

Uganda’s Sapiiny people call their language Kupsapiiny, sometimes spelled with an ’a’ at the end. They live in eastern Uganda on the slopes of Mount Elgon. Traditionally they raise cattle, many Sapiiny also rely on subsistence farming, cultivating maize, beans, wheat and potatoes. They sell their produce when they are able, but poor roads in some areas make it difficult to transport their crops to the market. More than 60 percent of the Sapiiny people live in poverty.

Clan elders provide leadership and, along with traditional prophets, establish laws, norms and values. Circumcision, performed on adolescent boys, provides cultural identity. Some Sapiiny also practice female circumcision, although in secret because it is illegal.

What are Their Beliefs?

Christianity came to the Sapiiny in the 1930s through the efforts of a large Christian denomination. Other denominations and Christian groups came in the 1970s. Now 70 percent of the Sapiiny people identify themselves as Christians, although only about half of those are deeply rooted in their faith and growing. Although they believe in the Creator, many see Him as distant. Many also fear ancestral spirits and practice traditional religion, keeping totems and relying on the revelations of local prophets and clan leaders for guidance.

The existing Kupsapiiny New Testament is not widely used. It is essentially a word-for-word rendering of the English Good News Bible and is not the way the Kupsapiiny naturally speak so they are beginning a new translation.

Profile Source:   Anonymous  

Expanded PDF Profile

People Name General Sebei
People Name in Country Sebei
Population in Sudan 17,800
Progress Scale 3.1
Least-Reached No
Indigenous Yes
Alternate Names Kupsabiny, Kupsapiny, Mbai, Sabiny, Sapiny
Affinity Bloc Sub-Saharan Peoples
People Cluster Nilotic
People Name General Sebei
Ethnic Code NAB62y
Country Sudan
Region East and Southern Africa
Continent Africa
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 11  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution rankinging, )
People Group Map Sebei in Sudan PDF Version

Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Kupsapiiny: Sor (18,000)
Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Kupsapiiny: Sor 18,000
Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible Portions Yes   (1975)
New Testament Yes   (1996)
Complete Bible No
Audio Bible Online
Category Resource
Audio Recordings Global Recordings
Audio Recordings Online New Testament (FCBH)
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Kupsabiny

Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 3.00 %)
20.00 %
Ethnic Religions
20.00 %
0.00 %
60.00 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %
Map Source: Joshua Project / Global Mapping International  
Profile Source: Anonymous  
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more
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