Sierra Leone Population 2017
Sierra Leone is a rapidly growing country with an estimated population of 6.2 million, up from 5.5 million in 2008. The country has a population density of 79 people per square kilometer (205/sq mi), which ranks 114th in the world.
The Western Area Urban District, which includes the capital and largest city Freetown, has a population density of 1,224 people per square kilometers, while the Koinadugu has a population density of 21 people per square kilometer. Freetown had a 2004 population of 853,000, followed by Bo at 233,000.
Sierra Leone Demographics
Sierra Leone has 16 different ethnic groups, each with a different language. The largest ethnic group is the Temne (35%), followed by the Mende (31%). The Temne are dominant in the Northern Sierra Leone and areas around the capital, while the Mende live mostly in the South-Eastern Seirra Leone and the Kono District.
The third-largest ethnic group are the Limba (8%), who are native to the area and live in Northern Seirra Leone. The fourth group are the Fula (7%), who are descendants of Fulani migrant settlers from the 17th and 18th century who came from Guinea.
Other major ethnic groups include the Mandingo (2%), who are descended from Guinea traders; the Kono (5%), who are also descended from Guinea migrants; and the Krio (2%) people, who are descendants of freed African American, West Indian and Liberated African slaves and make up 3% of the population.
Smaller ethnic groups include the Kuranko, who arrived in the area around 1600; the Loko (2%), who are native to Sierra Leone; the Kissi, and the Sherbro.
Sierra Leone has a young population with 42% of its population under 15, and a rural population with 62% of people living outside of the cities.
About 71% of the population are Muslims, while Christians make up 27% of the population. The remainder practice indigenous beliefs. Religious violence is rare in Sierra Leone.
Sierra Leone Future
Sierra Leone is one of the poorest countries in the world that is facing many challenges. It has one of the highest youth unemployment rates in West Africa (60%), much of its drinking water is collected from polluted sources, one of the worst literacy rates in Africa and health problems that include HIV/AIDS, malaria, and yellow fever. About 81% of its population lives in poverty.