What is the largest ethnic group in Africa?
With a total population of 47 million, the Yoruba are by far the largest ethnic group in Africa. The ethnic group occupy the south-western part of Nigeria as well as southern Benin, but most are originally from Nigeria.
The Yoruba people are an ethnic group in West Africa, mainly Nigeria, Togo and Benin. They comprise about 47 million people worldwide. The vast majority of this population comes from Nigeria, where they make up 21% of the country’s population, making them one of the largest ethnic groups in Africa.
Most Yoruba people speak Yoruba, which is the language of Niger and Congo, with the largest number of speakers. They share borders with the very closely related Itsekiri to the south-east.
To the east are the Edo, Ẹsan and Afemai groups in central-western Nigeria. In the south-west are the Gbe-speaking Mahi, Gun, Fon and Ewe, which border Yoruba communities in Benin and Togo.
In other West African countries, substantial Yoruba populations are found in Ghana, Benin, Ivory Coast and Sierra Leone.