Swahili: pronunciation of m- and n-


Senior Member
algerian arabic/american english
I have seen several materials show the pronunciation of m- in swahili as ᵊm (as in mtoto, mtu, mnasoma) however a close friend of mine, from uganda is a native speaker and pronounces them as mᵊtoto, mutu, mənasoma, etc.
Are both correct?
  • Perhaps the short schwa in the materials is only added to help a learner? The initial m- should be a syllable by itself, without accompanying vowel, either before or after it (cf. this Forvo entry for "mtoto", which clearly shows the m- as a syllable by itself).