People-in-Country Profile

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

Duano, Orang Kuala in Malaysia

Duano, Orang Kuala

Send us a photo of this people.  [1]

Duano, Orang Kuala in Malaysia map
Population [2] Language Religion % Christian % Evangl Online NT Jesus Film Progress
4,900 Duano Islam 0.00 % 0.00 % No No   

Duano, Orang Kuala in Malaysia

Profile Text
Submit Profile Text:

Introduction / History
The Orang Kuala, also known as Duano, are one of the nineteen Orang Asli people groups living in Peninsular Malaysia. They come under the Aboriginal Malay (officially and administratively called Proto-Malay) subgroup.

Orang Kuala means "People of the River Mouth," but the Orang Kuala call themselves Duano. Some Orang Kuala may also use the term Desin Dolaq, which means "People of the Sea" (or Orang Laut in the Malay language). Their ancestors were Muslim immigrants from the coasts of southern Sumatra and the Riau-Lingga archipelago in Indonesia.

The Orang Kuala live mostly in the villages located near the river mouths of the Batu Pahat, and Pontian districts of Johor.

What are their lives like?
The Orang Kuala are admittedly peaceful folk. They are not particularly attracted to technology, and only a small percentage completes their secondary education. In the past, they were boat-dwelling sea nomads, and specialized in sea fishing as well as searching and hunting for food on seashore. Today, most of the Orang Kuala make their living by fishing. They use different types of traps ranging from traditional to modern. In addition to fishing, small-scale farming and plantation work are important occupations for the Orang Kuala. For the most part, they specialize in harvesting the produce of the sea, shore, and mangroves for their own consumption and for trade. In at least one village, some are recognized for being quite skilled in restoring and selling second-hand furniture. They have adopted many aspects of Malay culture and lifestyle. However, racial prejudice by neighboring ethnic groups has caused some of the Orang Kuala to feel ashamed of their ethnic origin. Nevertheless, most remain proud of their origin. This is evident as other ethnic groups living in the same area are better off economically than most of the Orang Kuala.

What are their beliefs?
The Orang Kuala converted to Islam during the 19th century, yet many orient their daily personal and communal lives toward traditional animistic practices. For example, they believe that failure to respect the environment - the abode of the spirits (hantu) - results in illness, conflict, and death. A fisherman who dares to cast a net during the rainy season without performing the prescribed ritual inevitably suffers. The only cure lies in exorcism and appeasement of the spirits.

Like many Asian Muslims, they have retained many of their pre-Islamic religious beliefs and rituals. Customs and traditions have been harmonized with Islamic law. To the Orang Kuala the world is full of environmental spirits that cause either sickness or good fortune. Many of them still believe in evil spirits. They also believe that religious leaders, dwarfs, and traditional "medicine men" possess supernatural powers.

What are their needs?
Educational and economic development is spreading throughout the land of Malaysia. Like many of the other Orang Asli groups, however, the Orang Kuala are lagging behind because they are not attracted to education or technology.

Prayer Points
* Pray that local believers will relate and respond to the needs of these people.
* Ask the Creator to give believers wisdom who are willing to sacrifice time and effort to help the Orang Kuala.
* Pray for translation of the Bible to begin in this people group's primary language.
* Pray for the availability of the Jesus Film in the primary language of this people.
* Pray for Gospel messages to become available in audio format for this people group.

View Duano, Orang Kuala in all countries.

Prayer Links
  Submit Update:
Country: Malaysia
Continent: Asia
Region: Asia, Southeast
Persecution Rank:46 (Only top 50 ranked, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
10/40 Window: Yes
Location in Country:Peninsular, Johor state west coast, Pontian Kecil area, Muar, Batu Pahat, and Pontian districts, Lenga, Semerah, Minyak Beku, Senggarang, Rengit, Kuala Benut, Pontian Besar, and Sungai Layau settlements.
(Source: Ethnologue 2016)
  Peoples [3]
Submit Update:
People Name in Country: Duano, Orang Kuala
People Name General: Duano
Alternate People Names:
Desin Dola
ROP3 Code: 102737
Joshua Project People ID: 11623
Indigenous: Yes
Population in Country: 4,900
Population all Countries: 25,000
Least-Reached: Yes
Affinity Bloc: Malay Peoples
People Cluster: Borneo-Kalimantan
People Name General: Duano
Ethnic Code: MSY44z
Ethnic Relationships: Affinity Bloc -> People Cluster -> Peoples Ethnicity Tree
Submit Update:
Primary Language: Duano (4,900 Speakers)
Language Code (ISO): dup    Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages: 1
Religion [4]
Submit Update:
Primary Religion: Islam
Major Religions:
Buddhism0.00 % 
Christianity0.00 %(Evangelical: 0.00 %)
Ethnic Religions48.00 % 
Hinduism0.00 % 
Islam52.00 % 
Non-Religious0.00 % 
Other / Small0.00 % 
Unknown0.00 % 
Christianity Segments:
Anglican0.00 %
Independent0.00 %
Protestant0.00 %
Orthodox0.00 %
Other Christian0.00 %
Roman Catholic0.00 %
(Evangelicals distributed across Christianity segments)
Progress Indicators [5]
Progress Scale[6]   Few evangelicals and few who claim to be Christians. Little, if any, history of Christianity.
Least-Reached: Yes
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: Help start a Bible Translation
New Testament: None Reported
Complete Bible: None Reported
Ministry Resources [7]
None Reported
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

Duano, Orang Kuala in Malaysia

Global                 Global
  Affinity Bloc             Global  
People Cluster
    Borneo-Kalimantan     Asia, Southeast    
      Duano Malaysia    
            People-by-Country (Profile)          
            Duano, Orang Kuala in Malaysia          
      Religion Language  
      Islam     Duano  
    All Religions                              

Direct link: