People-in-Country Profile

People Selector:
Print version:
Step 1 - Select a Country:   Send us your updates!
Step 2 - Select a People:  

Maaban in South Sudan


Send us a photo of this people.  [1]

Maaban in South Sudan map
Population [2] Language Religion % Christian % Evangl Online NT Jesus Film Progress
72,000 Mabaan Ethnic Religions 15.00 % 5.00 % No   

Maaban in South Sudan

Profile Text
Submit Profile Text:

Introduction / History
Although more than a quarter of the surrounding groups are Christian, some of the smaller groups, including the Maaban, remain unreached. Their original homeland is believed to be somewhere east of the African Great Lakes. As both the population and the sizes of their herds increased, they migrated northward, reaching their present territory in the late fifteenth century. Today, they live near the Yabus river.

Throughout the nineteenth century the the region was raided for slaves and ivory. Although slave stations were established in many areas, they were well organized and able to deter the raiders. During the early twentieth century, their way of life was greatly affected. Medical services, irrigation, modern roads, and the introduction of a European style government, all led to changes in their culture.

What are their lives like?
Maaban communities can be likened to beads on a string, because they are spread out along the banks of the White Nile River about 200 yards apart. Several thatch-roofed mud huts make up one settlement. Each settlement represents one family's lineage and is headed by a chief. The chief settles disputes and maintains order in his settlement.

At the center of their territory is the capital, Buny.

The Maaban make their living by raising small herds of cattle, along with sheep, goats, pigs and hens. The cattle are given the utmost care because they are so important to the survival of the tribes. The cattle are even tied near fires at night to keep insects from biting them.

The Maaban must plant crops in gardens outside the villages in order to maintain an adequate diet. Milk supplies are often insufficient, since cattle diseases have taken a toll on their herds. Millet, maize, sesame, beans, and tobacco are raised. The men also hunt hippopotamuses, antelope, buffalo, and giraffes. Spear fishing is another important means of obtaining food and the Maaban are known as expert fishermen. While the men hunt and fish, the women tend the gardens, prepare the food, and make the cooking utensils.

The clothing and tribal markings worn by the Maaban clearly set them apart from neighboring groups. Neither the men nor the women wear much clothing, but they wear beads. Some of the lower teeth are removed from the Maaban while they are very young, unless they are in the royal family. They have tribal marks on their cheeks, arms and other parts of the body.

What are their beliefs?
The Maaban follow their traditional ethnic beliefs. They worship a deity named Juang or Jwanga Tolan.

The Maaban also believe in the power of the evil eye. Envy or anger may cause a person with the evil eye to bring misfortune upon others. They use prayer, sacrifices, and magic in an attempt to safeguard themselves from this power.

While many African tribes believe that the birth of twins is a curse, the Maaban consider it to be a blessing. In fact, twins are considered to be "children of god."

What are their needs?
Few Christian resources are available in the Maaban language. Added laborers and materials are greatly needed.

Prayer Points
* Ask God to grant wisdom and favor to missions agencies focusing on the Maaban.
* Pray that the Lord will raise up long term workers to join the few who have already responded.
* Ask God to begin using the Maaban Christians to reach out and share the Gospel with their own people.
* Ask God to raise up prayer teams that will begin breaking up the soil through intercession.
* Ask the Lord to raise up strong local churches among the Maaban.
* Pray for the availability of the Jesus Film in the primary language of this people.

View Maaban in all countries.

Prayer Links
  Submit Update:
Country: South Sudan
Continent: Africa
Region: Africa, East and Southern
10/40 Window: No
Location in Country:Upper Nile State, Mabaan county.
(Source: Ethnologue 2016)
  Peoples [3]
Submit Update:
People Name in Country: Maaban
People Name General: Maaban
Alternate People Names:
MebanSouthern Burun
ROP3 Code: 105951
Joshua Project People ID: 13172
Indigenous: Yes
Population in Country: 72,000
Population all Countries: 72,000
Least-Reached: No
Affinity Bloc: Sub-Saharan Peoples
People Cluster: Nilotic
People Name General: Maaban
Ethnic Code: NAB62z
Ethnic Relationships: Affinity Bloc -> People Cluster -> Peoples Ethnicity Tree
Submit Update:
Primary Language: Mabaan (72,000 Speakers)
Language Code (ISO): mfz    Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages: 1
Religion [4]
Submit Update:
Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions
Major Religions:
Buddhism0.00 % 
Christianity15.00 %(Evangelical: 5.00 %)
Ethnic Religions85.00 % 
Hinduism0.00 % 
Islam0.00 % 
Non-Religious0.00 % 
Other / Small0.00 % 
Unknown0.00 % 
Christianity Segments:
Anglican0.00 %
Independent0.00 %
Protestant40.00 %
Orthodox0.00 %
Other Christian0.00 %
Roman Catholic60.00 %
(Evangelicals distributed across Christianity segments)
Progress Indicators [5]
Progress Scale[6]   Evangelicals have a modest presence.
Least-Reached: No
GSEC Status:Level 1   Less than 2% Evangelical. Some evangelical resources available, but no active church planting within past 2 years
Bible Translation Status
Submit Update:
Bible Portions: 1947-1997
New Testament:
Complete Bible: 2017
Possible Bible Sources: Forum of Bible Agencies
 World Bible Finder
 World Christian Resource Directory
 Gospel Go
Ministry Resources [7]
Audio RecordingsMegaVoice Audio Bible and Stories
Audio RecordingsAudio Bible teaching (GRN)
Audio RecordingsOnline New Testament (FCBH)
GeneralBible Visuals
Ministry Activity
Register Ministry Activity:
Networking: Visit for networking possibilities.
Description: Register your ministry activity among this people group. Contact the Adopt-A-People Clearinghouse and Unleashed for the Unreached to learn about others that might be focused on this people group.
Data Notes
Data Sources

Maaban in South Sudan

Global                 Global
  Affinity Bloc             Global  
People Cluster
    Nilotic     Africa, East and Southern    
      Maaban South Sudan    
            People-by-Country (Profile)          
            Maaban in South Sudan          
      Religion Language  
      Ethnic Religions     Mabaan  
    All Religions                              

Direct link: