The Ogiek get Bible in their own language

Good News Notes:

The Ogiek community yesterday unveiled its first-ever Bible written in their native language courtesy of the BibleTranslation and Literacy (BTL).

The community spread across the counties of Nakuru, Narok, Elgeyo Marakwet, Baringo and Nandi has different dialects, making the minority group’s language near extinct due to assimilation after being evicted from Rift Valley forests.

Traditionally, the Ogiek were hunters and gatherers but population pressure and modernity have turned them into small-scale farmers famed for bee-keeping.

The journey to having the Ogiek Bible started in 2011. However, it took the BTL years to conduct a social linguistic survey where it was established that their original language was still thriving.

Narok-based Pastor Frederic Lemama from the community, who initiated the project, said he together with his friends felt the need to have the community’s language preserved through the Bible.

‘As a minority community this is a historic day for us. Reading the Bible in our own language is rejuvenating and inspiring. We thank BTL for taking cognizant of our unique community,’ said Lemama.”

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