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Africa

List of ethnic groups in Tanzania

There are more than 100 distinct ethnic groups in Tanzania, not including ethnic groups that reside in Tanzania as refugees from conflicts in nearby countries. These ethnic groups are primarily of Bantu origin, with small Nilotic-speaking, indigenous, and non-African minorities. The country lacks a clear dominant ethnic majority: the largest ethnic group in Tanzania, the Sukuma, comprises only about 16 percent of the country’s total population, followed by the Nyamwezi and the Chagga. Unlike its neighbouring countries, Tanzania has not experienced large-scale ethnic conflicts, a fact attributed to the unifying influence of the Swahili language.[1]

The ethnic groups mentioned here are mostly differentiated based on ethhnolinguistic lines. They may sometimes be referred to together with noun class prefixes appropriate for ethnonyms: this can be either a prefix from the ethnic group’s native language (if Bantu), or the Swahili prefix wa.

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