Saturday, 29 September 2018

Gabon - Ethnic Groups

There are at least 40 distinct tribal groups in Gabon. The Pygmies are said to be the original inhabitants. Only about 3,000 of them remain, scattered in small groups in the heart of the forest. The largest tribal group, the Fang (about 30% of the population), came from the north in the 18th century and settled in northern Gabon. In the Woleu-Ntem part of Gabon, their direct descendants may be found almost unmixed with other Bantu ethnic strains. The Nzebi, Obamba, Eshira, Bapounou, and Batéké are other major groups. Smaller groups include the Omyènè, a linguistic group that includes the Mpongwe, Galoa, Nkomi, Orungu, and Enenga; these peoples live along the lower Ogooué, from Lambaréné to Port-Gentil. The Kota, or Bakota, are located mainly in the northeast, but several tribes have spread southward; they are well known for their carved wooden figures. Other groups include Vili and the Séké. These other African groups and Europeans number about 154,000, including 6,000 French and 11,000 persons of dual nationality.

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