Mbukushu language

Native toNamibia, Angola, Botswana, Zambia
RegionOkavango River
Native speakers
95,000 (2020)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3mhw

Mbukushu or Thimbukushu is a Bantu language spoken by 45,000 people along the Okavango River in Namibia, where it is a national language, and in Botswana, Angola and Zambia.

In 2022 it was selected among a variety of Mother Tongue languages to be taught in Botswana Primary Schools in the year 2023.

Mbukushu is one of several Bantu languages of the Okavango which have click consonants; Mbukushu has three: tenuis c, voiced gc, and nasalized nc, as well as prenasalized ngc, which vary between speakers as dental, palatal, and postalveolar.[3] It also has a nasal glottal approximant.


  1. ^ a b Mbukushu at Ethnologue (25th ed., 2022) closed access
  2. ^ Jouni Filip Maho, 2009. New Updated Guthrie List Online
  3. ^ Nurse, Derek; Philippson, Gérard (2003). The Bantu Languages. Routledge. p. 37. ISBN 0700711341.

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