NALRC Language Map of Africa


The first contact between Europe and the Gold Coast dates back to1470 when the Portuguese landed on the west coast of Africa. The English, Danes, Dutch, Germans, and Portuguese controlled various parts of the coastal areas during the lucrative slave trade of the next three centuries. In 1821, the British Government took control of the Gold coast. It gained its independence as Ghana in 1957, being the first state in sub-saharan African to gain political independence. Because of the British influence, English became the official language though Akan, Ewe, Ga, and Moshi-Dagomba are still the principle languages.

Languages spoken

  • Akan-Twi
  • Ewe
  • Ga
  • Hausa
  • Dagomba


Twi is a cover term used for some of the dialects of the Akan language. Twi, sometimes referred to as Asante-Twi or Akuapem-Twi, is spoken by about 6 million people in Southern portions of Ghana. Over 40% of the Ghanaian population speaks at least one of the various dialects of the Akan language, while a good portion of the remainder speak these varieties as a second or third language. The Akan language varieties are all mutually intelligible. Twi is primarily spoken by two subgroups of the Akan people, the Asante and the Akuapem. Twi belongs to the Kwa subdivision of the Niger Congo group of African Languages.

The origin of the Akan people are not too clear, but some scholars have argued that the various Akan kingdoms were founded by refugees from several states of Kumbu after its destruction by Songhay in about 1470. They are written in the Roman alphabet. Like many languages spoken South of the Sahara, Twi is a tonal language.


Ewe will soon be updated


Ga update coming soon


Hausa Hausa belongs to the Hausa-Gwandara subgroup of the Chadic branch of Afro-Asiatic language family, is spoken in a very large portion of West Africa. Hausa is an official language in the northern Nigerian states of Sokoto, Kaduna, Kano, and Bauchi. It is a universal lingua franca in the remainder of the northern states of Nigeria as well as in Niger. It is a second language for many people in Benin, Chad, Cameroon, and Togo, and it is also spoken in enclaves in Ghana, Côte d'Ivoire, Burkina Faso, Libya, southern Nigeria, Sudan (Blue Nile Province), and Senegal, and Congo (Brazzaville). Hausa is believed to have about 24 million native speakers, and 15 million more second language speakers.

In addition to Nigerian and Cameroonian radio stations, all international broadcasters with transmissions to West Africa have programs in Hausa. These include the BBC, Voice of America, Deutsche Welle, Radio Moscow, and Radio Peking.


Dagomba update upcoming