Teso in Kenya





Largest Religion

Main Language


Introduction / History

The Kenyan Teso people are an extension of their Ugandan counterparts in that they were merely separated by the partition of East Africa during the historic scramble and partition of Africa just like the Maasai of Kenya and Tanzania and the Oromo of Kenya and Ethiopia. They are among the Plain Nilotic groups closely related to the Turkana, Karamojong, Toposa and the Maa groups of the Maasai and Samburu.

Where Are they Located?

The Teso people are located in Western Province of Kenya currently in Busia County which is in South of Mt. Elgon. Still, a large number of them inhabit parts of Bungoma and even Trans Nzoia Counties which are dominated by the Bukusu of the Luhya community.

What Are Their Lives Like?

Teso people are the only Plains Nilotic people whose lifestyles underwent drastic changes. Having been pastoralists since time immemorial, these people are now the most successful farmers in both Western Kenya and Eastern Uganda.

What Are Their Beliefs?

In recent years the people have changed much of their lifestyle. They used to exhume the dead after some time because of population pressure on their land and they no longer have bushes to dump the bones of people who died long time ago. Now they use cement graves -- a sign that they have embraced new ways of dealing with the dead. They believe in one God (Akuju) and also in life after death.

What Are Their Needs?

Promotion of self-respect and cohesiveness. Improvement of schools and other social amenities, development of roads, urbanization and governance.

Prayer Points

* Pray that the Teso can embrace wholly the true God and stop practicing witchcraft and other harmful beliefs.
* Pray for prosperity to come to the Teso land
* Pray for rejuvenation of ways of doing things through enrichment of their mindset and for the people to become more hardworking and productive to counter the challenges of life.

Profile Source:   Anonymous  

People Name General Teso
People Name in Country Teso
Population in Kenya 389,000
World Population 2,659,000
Countries 2
Progress Scale 3.2
Least-Reached No
Indigenous Yes
Alternate Names Iteso
Affinity Bloc Sub-Saharan Peoples
People Cluster Nilotic
People Name General Teso
Ethnic Code NAB62q
People ID 15448
Country Kenya
Region East and Southern Africa
Continent Africa
10/40 Window No
Persecution Rank 19  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Location in Country Western Province, Busia District.   Source:  Ethnologue 2010

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Enthologue Language Map

Ethnolinguistic map from University of Texas or other map

Languages & Dialects on file:  1  (up to 20 largest shown)
Teso (389,000)
Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Teso 389,000
For Primary Language: Teso

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible Portions Yes   (1910-1992)
New Testament Yes   (1930-1966)
Complete Bible Yes   (1961)
Audio Bible Online
Resource Format
Audio Bible teaching (GRN) Audio Recordings
Bible: Bible 1961 Text / Printed Matter
Four Spiritual Laws General
Jesus Film: view in Teso Film / Video
Online New Testament (FCBH) Audio Recordings
World Missionary Press Booklets Text / Printed Matter
Primary Religion: Christianity
Religion Subdivision: Protestant

Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 46.00 %)
94.00 %
Ethnic Religions
6.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %

Christian Segments Percent
0.0 %
15.0 %
0.0 %
Other Christian
0.0 %
75.0 %
Roman Catholic
10.0 %
Photo Source: Anonymous  
Profile Source: Anonymous  
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more

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