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Ethnic Groups In Nigeria- The Ndola People

The Ndola People are found in Taraba State, Nigeria and located in Kurmi and Ngada, with a handful of them also found in Cameroon.

Brief Introduction of the Ndola People

Ndola is an ethnic group found in Nigeria, with few living in Cameroon. The Ndola people have existed in what is now called Kurmi and Ngada areas for over 1,000 years, since the split of the Bantu Kingdom of which they are descendants.

In Taraba State, the Ndola people have an estimated population of about one hundred thousand (100,000). They are also found in Dodéo, Adamaoua Region in Cameroon and their population is estimated at about 4,000. Ndola is sometimes called by other people in Nigeria as Ndoro, Ndoola, Nundoro, while in Cameroon it is also called Njoyame. Ndola is in the Benue-Congo language families, with a parent subgroup of Mambiloid tribes. Other ethnic groups in this group which have similar phonology are Mambila, Suga, Kwanja, Vute, Kamkam, Twendi and Wawa. Most of these languages are found around the Mambila Plateau region.

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Ndola people are also found in the low land areas of Kurmi which is their most dominant land, Gashaka, Bali and Donga. In Kurmi Local Government, the Ndola people own its Headquarters which is in Ba’Issa. Ba’Issa is in two words: “Ba“, a Ndola word, meaning Daddy, while “Issa” is a Hausa name meaning Jesus. The name of the first settler and owner of the land was called Issa. Whenever visitors want to visit him from other surrounding villages or communities, they will always say “We will be going to see Ba’Issa”. This name was also adopted by the Missionaries who first visited the area in the early 1900s. This is the name of the town used till date, and it eventually became the headquarters of Kurmi Local Government.

Geographical Location of the Ndola People

Ndola people are located in Nigeria with an estimated population of 98,000 while a handful of about 4,000 Ndola people are located in the Cameroon. In Nigeria, they are specifically found in Taraba State living in five different local governments which include Kurmi, Bali, Gashaka, Donga and Sardauna. On September 21, 2016, the Governor of the state, Arch Darius Dickson Ishaku carved out and gave them a Special Development Area called Ngada Special Development Area. By this development, it now means the Ndola People can be found in only two areas in Nigeria; that is Kurmi Local Government and Ngada Special Development area which are all in Taraba State of Nigeria.

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Economy and Religious Beliefs

The majority of Ndola are farmers living in mountainous and low land regions of Taraba State.

Ndola people were originally traditional worshippers until the arrival of the Sudan United Mission of North America and Germany. The missionaries made contact with the Ndola people via present Kurmi Local Government in its headquarters in Ba’Issa. The majority of them are now Christians with fewer Muslims and traditionalists.



Featured image source: iDONSABI

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Jeremiah is a scholar and a poet. He has a keen eye for studying the world and is passionate about people. He tweets at @jeremiahaluwong.

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