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This survey was conducted to investigate the need for development projects in the Northern Mao, Kwama, and Komo speech varieties of western Ethiopia. A team of four surveyors conducted two trips to the area in December 2003 and January 2004. They used questionnaires, gathered wordlists, and conducted both Oromo proficiency testing and intelligibility testing.
If language development was started in the area covered by this survey, current findings indicate project needs in the Northern Mao, Kwama, and Komo speech varieties. Although Oromo is the most important language of wider communication (LWC) in the area, the majority of people belonging to these ethnic groups have only limited proficiency in Oromo. The results of this survey confirmed the existence of a separate Komo speech variety; however, they show that development in Kwama could also benefit the Komo people. Future development in Northern Mao could benefit the Mao speakers of both the Bambassi area and the Didessa Valley.