The Maba of Chad

Population: 300,000

Location: Mostly Eastern Chad and some in Sudan. The Maba are one of the largest non-Arab people groups in Chad. They are the dominant tribe of the Wadai mountains. The Wadai region is hot and dry most of the year, characterized by broad flat grasslands and plateaus.

History: Long ago the Maba overthrew the Christian Tunjur dynasty in Wadai and formed the backbone of the Islamic Wadai Empire, which dominated Eastern Chad in the 1800s. In modern Maba society, chiefs and members of the royal class still possess a high degree of prestige and power, although the French abolished the sultanate in 1912.

Culture: Although they are Muslims, people live in fear, using amulets and charms to ward off evil and sickness. They are primarily farmers, growing millet and wheat, as well as raising horses, goats, sheep, and chickens. The Sultan serves as head of state of the region and rules through governors and district chiefs. The Queen Mother is highly esteemed and has great influence.

Religion: Folk Islam

Latest Prayer Updates:

One believer

Praise God that after several years praying for more workers, we now have three preparing to join the one member. Pray for the one Maba lady who became a believer but has very little knowledge to persevere in her faith and to listen to the bible materials which she has on her phone. Pray that a lady from the local church will have opportunities to encourage her.


“The word of God is living and active” but if it is not available in a form readily understandable to people, it has little effect. Currently there is no scripture published for the Maba although Genesis has been revised and theoretically could be published. John and Matthew Chapters 1-7 were translated 15 yrs ago but never used. Now the one translator believes they should be revised before being used but she only works on Maba 40-50% of her time being involved in translation consultation otherwise. Pray for a miracle that something would change in this situation and more scriptures would become readily available. The literacy rate is about 14 % for adult females in Chad and only 31% for adult males. Obviously audio recordings are very necessary but it can be very time consuming making them.

Share This