Introduction / History The Mpade people live in the northernmost part of Cameroon, just south of Lake Chad. Their language area extends into Nigeria to the west and Chad to the northeast.
Traditional rulers in the area are called sultans. Rulers of smaller regions are called blamas. The town of Makary is the hub of the language area with a number of surrounding villages in Cameroon, and a few villages in Nigeria and Chad. A number of Mpade speakers also live in the larger cities of Cameroon, Nigeria, and Chad.
Linguistically, Mpade is one of the eight Kotoko languages, and Mpade speakers refer to themselves ethnically as Kotoko. Mpade has a Latin script writing system but it is not currently widely used.
The Kotoko are traditionally fishermen and farmers, making use of the seasonal rivers that flow in the area to irrigate their fields. It can be very difficult to access the language area during rainy season (June-Sept.).
Islam dominates as the primary religion, with a good deal of syncretism with animism. The few Mpade Christians in the area are poorly educated and isolated. Mission work coming from outside the community will need to be done once it is safe enough to work in the area. At this point, because of the activity of the Boko Haram, all missionaries have been asked to leave the north of Cameroon . There was a Nigerian missionary reaching out to the Kotoko but he was killed by the Boko Haram in 2011.