In its latest update, June 2022, The Oxford English Dictionary, one of the most authoritative sources for the English language in the world, entered or revised 200 words and entries in use in East Africa.
Many of these are in the Kiswahili language, a national language in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda, three English-speaking countries. Among these, the best known are the words nyama choma, (grilled meat), asante sana, (many thanks), chips mayai (a dish of Tanzanian and Kenyan cuisine), daladala (minibus for urban transport in Tanzania), and mandazi, (a small sweet pancake).
The Kiswahili language, therefore, is increasingly used and widespread even beyond regional borders. Last February it was officially adopted as the language of the African Union and on 7 July – which the United Nations in 2021 designated as World Day of the Kiswahili language – it was adopted by Uganda as its second national language.
Over the years, this language has also spread to the south of the continent, in parts of South Africa (where its teaching has been introduced in schools since 2020), Zambia, Malawi, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Mozambique, while Burundi, Madagascar and the Comoros Islands have, in some ways, also adopted it.