Soga love poem
Nasingira okuwandiwaka engero
Aye yanguwaku kibulawo
Nekisembayo “nkwenda inho”
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For her, this Lusoga love poem (other names : Kigulu, Lulamogi, Tenga, Nholo, Olusoga, Gweri, Lusiginhi, Lower Lunyole, Lutenga, Lulamoogi, Lutembe, Tembé, Ludiope, Lamoogi, Soga, Lusiginyi, Lamogi, Lunholo, Gabula, Siginyi, Lukono, Luuka, Siki, Lugweri, Diope, Lugabula, Lukigulu).
Lusoga, is an interlacustrine Bantu language, of the Nigero-Congolese group, from the Busoga region (Uganda), which count 2.5 million speakers. It is an important language, from the south and the center of the country, for all the commercial exchanges.
This tonal language, also called soga, is spoken between Lakes Kyoga and Victoria, by the Sogas (Basogas) people.
In general the word lusoga refers to the language and the term Soga is more general, it designates at the same time the culture, the language and the people who speak it.
There are four dialect varieties: Lutenga, Lulamoogi, Lusiginhi and Lower Lunyole, which themselves include sub-dialects.
If many studies have been done on some aspects of Lusoga, this does not mean that this language is still very well documented.
In Uganda, in the region where it is spoken, Lusoga which has been recognized as an official language since 2005, and is used in radio and television programs.
But if the language is taught in school and university, Lusoga remains a language of oral communication.
The Basoga population represents the 4th largest community in Uganda, or 8% of the population.
The Sogas are linguistically related to the interlacustrine Bantu. Farmers (coffee, cotton, peanuts, corn), and breeders, they carried out marital compensation with head of cattle.
Organized in a segmental fashion, they were patrilineal and patrilocal. They had developed a state based on a complex hereditary social stratification (aristocrats, common people, slaves). They are known as a "Bantu bureaucracy".
It is believed that the Basoga, at the origin, are Bantu peoples who came from present-day Cameroon through different places, several thousand years ago.
They would have arrived in Busoga in the 14th century, to mix with the peoples already present in the region, who often were already Bantu. Another wave of migration to Busoga, that of the Luos, will have a strong influence on the group thus formed.
In the basoga culture, music occupies an important place. Two instruments are typical, the Akindinda and the Basoga lyre made of wood and lizard skin.