The current population of the Municipality with Ellembelle inclusive (according to the 2000 population censuses) is 142,959 (males 71673 and females 71,198) constituting 7.40% of the Western Regional population with a growth rate of 3.2%
The population density of 68 for the Municipality may indicate no great pressure of population on the Land. However the same cannot be said of the pressure on Resources or what the Land can generate. Settlements or Growth points like Axim, Nsein, Bamiankor and Kutukrum have been experiencing relatively higher population densities with corresponding pressure being exerted on the existing limited infrastructural facilities. The Municipality has over 280 settlements 20 out of which have a total population of over 74321 constituting 52% of the population.
Population of 20 Largest Settlements (2000)
The figures clearly indicate that the Municipality Capital, Axim, and a few others like Aiyinase, Esiama and Asasetre experience higher relative growth of the Municipality population from 1970 to 2000 and beyond. This may be due mainly to high birth rate and in-migration, and also to the relatively better economic and social infrastructural facilities available there. It is, therefore, necessary to ensure that opportunities for improving the lives of the people in the Municipality are more evenly distributed. This has policy implications for development.
The Municipality population structure does not differ much from the general demographic trends. It indicates a broad base that gradually tapers off with increasing age. From the census, the Municipality population is relatively youthful with 51% as the Economically Active force that is slightly below that of the Regional and National ones.
This implies more job creation for about 29,288 people as well as an increase in Health, Education and Recreational facilities, among others for the dependent cohorts (0 – 14 and 65+) which constitute 24619.6 (43%) and 3240.8 (6%) respectively. It also has implications for future population growth. The Municipality growth trend reflects that of the Regional with a higher male population of 28669 as against 28479 for the Female giving a sex ratio of 1:0:7.This could be explained by the high level of male in-migration into the Municipality due to the economic activities like fishing, farming and lately small – scale mining.
Rural – Urban Split
The Municipality is highly Rural if the criterion that any settlement with population of 5,000 or more represents an Urban one is used. The population is concentrated in mostly the Rural Centres (41,968) within the municipality. About 26.6% of the 2,000 Population (15,180 ) reside in Urban Centres as compared to the Regional and National ones of 36.3% and 43.9% respectively. However, there has been a gradual increase in the Urban Population from 1.4% in 1960, 0.7% in 1970, 15% in 1984 to 26.6% in 2000.The table below illustrates this trend since 1960.
As earlier on said, the marked increase in the side of Urban Population within the Municipality was due largely to unequal distribution of socio-economic resources. Hence lopsided development planning activities leading to over-concentration of social amenities in few Urban Centres must be consciously addressed. Therefore it is imperative to lay emphasis on Rural strategy of development and at the same time providing the needed infrastructural facilities to enable the few Urban Settlements perform the roles as Service Centres.
The Municipality experiences a considerable degree of movement of people (migrants) into and out of it. This could be largely attributed to seasonal fishing activities as well as the migrant farm labourers and the influx of small-scale mining operations and refugees into the Municipality. These exert much pressure on the limited social services especially water, sanitation and housing. All these have implications for development and must be taken care of accordingly in the programming stages.
These exert much pressure on the limited social services especially, water, sanitation and housing.
All these have implications for development and must be taken care of accordingly in the programming stages.
Date Created : 11/20/2017 8:24:16 AM