Bemba in Tanzania

Main Language
Largest Religion
Progress Gauge

Introduction / History

Bembe or Wabembe are Bantu people, occupying the whole coast of Lake Tanganika of the Kigoma Region. All of them are descendants of those who came from the Democratic Republic of the Congo a long time ago. Some of them changed the tribe name and are now called Wamanyema, others mixed with the Waha tribe (the majority ethnic group of the Kigoma region).

Where Are they Located?

The Wabembe of Tanzania occupy the entire coastal region of Lake Tanganyika, from Kagunga to Mgambo. Their population is not totally known. This is because most of them claim to be Wamanyema, Wagoma and sometimes Waha people. 85% of Ujiji population, Kigoma region, are Bembe people.

What Are Their Beliefs?

Their ancestors believe in a deity they see as the living God - the Yehova. Ancestors used to give offerings through prayers which they call "Iyela or Lo 'elo" when famine or illness come into the village. They also strongly beilve in the spirit of the dead which they call "Oci". Oci are considered as the messenger from ancestors which come to visit the surviving children and grandchildren. Oci comes in the form of a spirit talking to people through a human being. for the Oci to come everytime, a small round house must be built in the form of Msonge- which serves the purpose of invoking the ancestor. They speak Kibembe or Ebembe.

Prayer Points

Scripture Prayers for the Bemba in Tanzania.

Profile Source:   Anonymous  

People Name General Bemba
People Name in Country Bemba
Population this Country 5,700
Population all Countries 5,839,000
Total Countries 5
Indigenous No
Progress Scale 5
Unreached No
Frontier People Group No
GSEC 4  (per
Pioneer Workers Needed
Alternate Names Bembe; Chibemba; Chisinga; Chiwemba; Ichibemba; Wemba
People ID 10782
ROP3 Code 101243
Country Tanzania
Region Africa, East and Southern
Continent Africa
10/40 Window No
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Country Tanzania
Region Africa, East and Southern
Continent Africa
10/40 Window No
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank Not ranked

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Primary Language Bemba (5,700 speakers)
Language Code bem   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 1
Primary Language Bemba (5,700 speakers)
Language Code bem   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 1
People Groups Speaking Bemba

Primary Language:  Bemba

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes  (1904-1948)
Bible-New Testament Yes  (1916-2003)
Bible-Complete Yes  (1956-2016)
Bible-NT Audio Online
Bible-NT Text Online
Possible Print Bibles
World Bibles
Forum Bible Agencies
National Bible Societies
World Bible Finder
Virtual Storehouse
Resource Type Resource Name
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching
Audio Recordings DAVAR Partners recording, complete Bible
Audio Recordings Online New Testament
Audio Recordings Story of Jesus audio
Film / Video God's Story video
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Bemba
Film / Video LUMO film of Gospels
Film / Video Magdalena video
Film / Video My Last Day video, anime
Film / Video Story of Jesus for Children
Film / Video Walk with Jesus video
General Four Spiritual Laws
General Gospel resources links
Mobile App Download audio Bible app as APK file
Mobile App Download audio Bible app from Google Play Store
Text / Printed Matter Bible: Bemba
Text / Printed Matter Literacy primer for Bemba
Primary Religion: Christianity
Religion Subdivision: Protestant
Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 14.00 %)
95.00 %
Ethnic Religions
5.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %
Christian Segments Percent
0.0 %
5.0 %
0.0 %
Other Christian
0.0 %
65.0 %
Roman Catholic
30.0 %
Photo Source Anonymous 
Profile Source Anonymous  
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Read more