Out of the sixteen countries in West Africa that makes up the West African sub region eight of them are basically French speakers. Most of the West African French speaking countries were colonized by the French hence after independence; majority of them adopted French as their official languages. Below are the eight West African countries that speak French.
Benin: Linguistically, Benin is very diverse. It has about fifty five spoken languages. The most spoken languages in Benin are Yoruba, Fulfulde and Fon. The official or national language in Benin is the French language spoken by almost everyone in the country.
Burkina Faso: Out of the 18.65 million people in Burkina Faso, 85% of the population speaks French. However, the country is a multilingual nation which has about seventy indigenous languages. The widely spoken local languages are Mossi, Dyula,, Fula,Gourmanche and Bissa. French is Burkina Faso’s national’s official language.
Ivory Coast: Cote d’ lvoire has approximately seventy eight spoken local languages. Some of the local languages used for communication in the country include Wobe,Bete, Agni, Baoul, Guere, Senoufo and Abe among others. The official recognized national language in Ivory Coast is the French language.
Senegal: This is another West African country that speaks French. Out of the nearly 15 Million people, almost everyone can communicate in French. However, the country is also a multilingual nation with an estimate of about thirty six local languages. Some of the spoken local dialect includes Mandinka, Pulaar, Soninke, Noon, Wolof, Jola-Fonyi, Balanta Ganja among other languages. Wolof is primarily the widest spoken local dialect.
Togo: Togo has about thirty nine local languages. Kabiye and Ewe are two of the local dialects that are widely used in communication in Togo. Officially, the recognized national language is the French language which is spoken by nearly six million people in the country.
Guinea: Guinea is another popular French Speaking West Africa Countries you should also know. Guinea has about 40 local indigenous languages. Some of the local languages are Kpelle, Susu, Malinke, Toma and Fula. The official language of the state is French.
Mali: Mali’s national language is French. The country has about thirteen indigenous languages which include Fulfulde, Soninke, Bomu, Dogon, Hasanya Arabic, Bambara, Mamara, Xaasongaxango, Bozo and Songhay. Mali has a rich language culture. Aside french language; Bambara is widely spoken across Mali.
Niger: Niger has about twenty local indigenous languages. Some of the Nigerien local languages include Hausa, Tassawaq, Buduma, Kanuri, Songhai, Gourmanchema and Arabic. Basically, Niger’s official language is the French Language which was inherited by the colonial master after independence.