The Hamer (also spelled Hamar) are a tribal people in southwestern Ethiopia. They live in Hamer Bena woreda (or district), a fertile part of the Omo River valley, in the Debub Omo Zone of the Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples Region (SNNPR). They are largely pastoralists, so their culture places a high value on cattle.The Assistant Administrator of Hamer Bena, Ato Imnet Gashab, has commented that only six tribal members have ever completed secondary education.
The Afar (Afar alphabet Qafár, Feera ዐፋር ʿāfār, Arabic: عفار, Amh. translit. āfār, also spelled አፋር) are an ethnic group in the Horn of Africa who reside principally in the Danakil Desert in the Afar Region of Ethiopia, as well as in Eritrea and Djibouti. They number 1,276,374 people in Ethiopia (or 1.73% of the total population), of whom 108,488 are urban inhabitants, according to the most recent census (2007).
The Afar make up over a third of the population of Djibouti, and are one of the nine recognized ethnic divisions (kililoch) of Ethiopia. The Afar language, which is part of the Cushitic branch of the Afro-Asiatic language family, is spoken by ethnic Afars in the Afar Region of Ethiopia, as well as in eastern Eritrea and Djibouti.
However, since the Afar are traditionally nomadic herders, they may be found further afield. The Afar Danakil are the sister culture of the ancient Ta-Seti people. Whereas the Ta-Seti culture were amongst the founding branches of the eastern Bejaw or Beja People; the Ta-Antyu (Puntite) Utjenet Culture were progenitors of the Afari and Tigre cultures. The Land of Punt was of pivotal importance to the development of Egypt's pre-dynastic civilization and played a significant role throughout dynastic Egyptian history.
The Utjenet and Ta-Seti cultures formed a single territory until Egypt's Second Intermediate Period when opposing cultures of Omo ethnic clans from further south and west pushed into central Sudan, separating the two branches of the Ta-Antyw. The Northern most branch would become the Ta-Seti whilst the Southernmost populations would become the Afar. They are sometimes called Danakil, a name used specifically to refer to northern Afars, while southern Afars can be called Adel (also transliterated as Adal), similar to the former Adal Sultanate.
Surma is the Ethiopian government's collective name for the Suri, the Mursi and the Me'en with a total population of 186,875. All three groups speak languages of the southeast branch of the Surmic language cluster. Some have used the terms "Suri" and "Surma" interchangeably, or for contradictory purposes, so readers should note carefully what group an author is referring to. Suri or Shuri is the name of a sedentary pastoral people and its Nilo-Saharan language in the Bench Maji Zone of the Southern Nations, Nationalities, and People's Region (SNNPR) in Ethiopia, to the Sudan border, and across the border in Sudan. Some are located west of Mizan Teferi. Population: 20,622 (1998 est.).
Mursi or Murzu is the name of a closely related sedentary pastoral people whose language (Mursi) is over 80% cognate with Suri. They are located next to the Suri in the center of the SNNPR and the lowlands southwest of Jinka in the Debub Omo Zone. The Mursi do not regard themselves as Surma, despite the cultural and linguistic similarities. Population: 7,500 of whom 92.25% live in the SNNPR (2007 census).
The Tsamai people (also spelled Tsemay, Tsamay, Tsemai, Tsamako, or Tsamakko) are an ethnic group of southwestern Ethiopia. They speak an East Cushitic language called Tsamai, which is one of the Dullay languages, and thus related to the Bussa and Gawwada languages. According to the 1998 Ethiopian census, the Tsamai number 9,702. The number of speakers of the Tsamai language is 8,621, with 5,298 monolinguals. Many Tsamai use the Konso language for trade purposes.
Most Tsamai live in the Hamer Bena woreda of the Debub Omo Zone of the Southern Nations, Nationalities, and People's Region, in the Lower Omo River Valley and just to the west of the Konso special woreda. Many Tsamai live in the town of Weyto, which is approximately 50 km from the town of Jinka, on the Konso-Jinka road. Most Tsamai are agro-pastoralists, herding cattle as well as growing crops. Many Tsamai women wear clothing made from leather. Many Tsamai men carry small stools around with them, which they use in case they need to sit down.