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Uganda -- Languages

The official language of Uganda is English although it is a relatively recent language. Introduced by theBritish in the late nineteenth century, it was the language of the colonial administration. After independence, English became the official language of Uganda and continues to be used in government and commerce. It is also the primary medium of educational instruction. Official publications and most major newspapers are published in English, and it is also used in radio and television broadcasts.

Bantu languages are spoken by most Ugandans, especially in the southern and western parts of the country. Luganda, a Bantu language, is the mother tongue of Uganda's largest ethnic group, the Baganda. In the 19th and 20th centuries, Luganda spread throughout the country as a language of political domination by the British. The British used Baganda chiefs throughout Uganda as a means of indirect rule. Consequently, Luganda is spoken and understood in many parts of Uganda outside of traditional Baganda areas. There is also a literature in Luganda including political pamphlets, newspapers, and plays.

Although most Ugandans can speak other languages in addition to their mother tongue, English and Swahili, they prefer to speak their mother tongues at home and in social situations.

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