What Are the African Countries That Speak French?

African countries that speak French are Benin, Burkina Faso, the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Republic of Congo. Other francophone African countries are the Ivory Coast, Gabon, Guinea, Mali and Niger. These countries, along with Senegal and Togo, have French as their official language.

Other African countries where French is one of the official languages are Burundi, Cameroon, Chad, Comoros and Djibouti. Equatorial Guinea, Madagascar, Rwanda and Seychelles also use French as one of the official languages. In Tunisia and Morocco, French is spoken by the upper classes. Many of these countries are former French colonies. As of 2010, about 120 million people in Africa spoke French.

Comoros is an archipelago of islands found in the Indian Ocean. It gained independence from France in 1975 and endured a fraught political climate until the election of President Ikililou Dhoinine in May, 2011. Like Comoros, Madagascar is also found in the Indian Ocean. It became independent from France in 1960.

Burkina Faso, which is found in Western Africa, was once known as Upper Volta. It gained independence from France in 1960. Blaise Compaore became President in 1987 and is still president as of 2014.

Rwanda and Burundi were once joined together as the colony of Ruanda-Urundi. They were colonies not of France, but of francophone Belgium. They separated and became independent in 1962.