Pokot Dictionary

English is one of the two official languages and is spoken in the major cities as well as by those connected to the tourist industry. Outside of the large cities, Kiswahili (known in English as Swahili), is the other official language, and a few words of this language will go a long way.

Common Kiswahili Phrases:

Jambo – Hello (This is pidgin Kiswahili – expect to be greeted with this if you look like a tourist. Kenyans never say Jambo to each other, although they may sometimes use the more grammatically pure Hujambo? to which the correct response is Sijambo)
Habari gani? – How are you?
Mzuri sana – Fine, thank you (lit. “[I am] very good”)
Tafadhali – Please
Asante sana – Thank you very much
Asante hapana – No thank you
Wacha – Stop it
Karibu – You’re welcome (to)
Jina langu ni – My name is
Shilingi ngapi? – How much does it cost?
Kwa heri – Goodbye
Pole pole (pronounced pol-ay pol-ay) – Slowly, slowly
Hakuna matata – No problem

Many local Pokot speak good English as well as Swahili and local languages.

Pokot Dictionary

Baby – Munda
Child – Moning
Old Man – Muzei
Girl – Chept-o
Pole – Ket-h
Hole – Mnung
Lets go – Twende
Boss – Wo
Father – Pap
My Father – Papo nyen
Hello – Poigshoi
Nice – Karam
Best – Karam Nyoman
Big – Kubwa
Small – Ndogo
See you – Keriama
See you tomorrow – Keriama Asiec

Goat – Arun
Goats – Ngoror
Donkey – Skrio
Cow – Tang
Cows – Tich

1 – Akonga
2 – Odeng
3 – Somiok
4 – Angwan
5 – Mutch
100 – Akonmha
1000 – Nnunghutian


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