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Sudan / Peoples /

People in southcentral Sudan, with a population of 600,000 (2002 estimate), living in the flat area to the west of the White Nile. They are a subgroup of the Nilotic ethnic family.
Their society is based on small communities, which are linked politically together, and with one common chief ruling over small regions. On top of their system is a king who traditionally claims that his office is installed by the gods, bestowing upon the him divine qualities.
Their ecomony is based upon pastoral activities, which includes the breeding of cattle, sheep and goats. Hunting is an important additional source of income, together with agriculture.
Their language belongs to the Nilo-Saharan family.
In addition to the cult around the king, their belief system is one where they emphasize one supreme god above other deities. On the more common level is the cult centered around ancestral spirits, which are both revered and feared, hence they need to be taken well care of through frequent ceremonies.

By Tore Kjeilen