Kiga (also called Rukiga, Ruchiga, or Chiga) is the native language of the people of Kiga people (Bakiga). Kiga is a very similar language to the Nkore language. It was first written in the second half of the nineteenth century.
Kiga is so similar to Nkore (84%–94% lexical similarity) that some argue they are dialects of the same language, called Nkore-Kiga by Charles Taylor.
In common with other Bantu languages, Kiga has a noun class system in which prefixes on nouns mark membership of one of the noun genders. Pronouns, adjectives, and verbs reflect the noun gender of the nominal they refer to. Some examples of noun classes:
- mu – person (singular), e.g. omukiga = inhabitant of Kigezi land
- ru – language, e.g. Rukiga = language of the Kiga
- ba – people, e.g. Bakiga = The Kiga people
- ki – customs or traditions, e.g. kikiga, (sometimes spelled Kichiga), describes religious tradition common to the Kiga people. Sometimes the people are called 'Chiga' by people not understanding the linguistic rules in relation to the prefixes.
The sound [l] is not distinctive in Rukiga. The letter "r" is used instead.
See also 
- ^ Kiga at Ethnologue (16th ed., 2009)
- ^ Jouni Filip Maho, 2009. New Updated Guthrie List Online
- ^ Lewis, Paul M. (ed.) (2009). "Ethnologue Report for Language Code: nyn". Ethnologue: Languages of the World, Sixteenth edition. Dallas, TX: SIL International. Retrieved 9 December 2009.
- ^ Poletto, Robert E. (1998). Topics in Runyankore Phonology. Linguistics Graduate Program, Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio. Retrieved Dec. 8, 2009.