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Lingala is an official language in both the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Republic of the Congo. It is based on the Bobangi language of central Africa but also borrows words extensively from French, English, Spanish and Portuguese. It is a Bantu language (some linguists think it is actually a Bantu creole), which means it has similarities to languages as far reaching as Swahili, Zulu and Chichewa. While French is used as a lingua franca in the DRC, Lingala was historically the official language of the army and to this day is the lingua franca of the DRC's armed forces.
Democratic Republic of the Congo
Republic of the Congo
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