Posted by on 2/6/2003 9:44:56 AM

Ethnic Composition and Culture: Yoruba is the main ethnic group in Ogun State which com prises several dialects. These

West African Portland Cement Complex, Ewekoro
West African Portland Cement Complex, Ewekoro

are Egba speaking people in Abeokuta North, Abeokuta South, lfo, Ewekoro, ObafemiOwode, Odeda and Ado Odo/Ota LGAs; Egbadospeaking people in Egbado North, Egbado South, lmekoAfon and lpokia LGAs.

ljebuspeaking people in ljebuEast, ljebuNorth, ljebuNorth East, ljebuOde, Odogbolu and Ogun Waterside LGAs; Remo dialectical group is found in Sagamu, Remo North and Ikenne LGAs. Other dialectical groups in the state include Oyo(Owu), Awori, ikale and llaje.

The Egun people are from Dahomey (Benin Republic) where their kin across the international boundary to the west live. Some aspects of the culture of the people in the state include traditional arts, carving and sculpture and smithery amongst others. The traditional religious practices in the state, some of which have attraction for tourists, include the Olumo Rock in Abeokuta (Obebiyi, 1992).

Population Size and Distribution: Ogun State had a total population of 2,338,570 according to the Census figures of 1991.

Famous Ayegbami Sawmills, Ijebu Igbo
Famous Ayegbami Sawmills, Ijebu Igbo

The Abeokuta group of LGAs had the highest population density of 480 persons per sq. km., followed by Sagamu group with 288 persons/sq. km. in 1991.

This was followed by AdoOdo/Ota and ljebuOde groups with each having 271 persons/sq. km., while Egbado South had a density of 234 persons/sq. km. The least population density of thirtyone people/sq. km was recorded by ljebuEast LGA. The overall population density for the state in that year was 143. The five LGA groups, namely, Egbado North, ljebuEast, ObafemiOwode, Ogun Waterside and Odeda which had population densities lower than that for the state average could be classified as neglected rural areas.

Urban and Rural Development: The colonial administrator, Lord Lugard, introduced the Township Ordinance of 1917 which made provision for the creation and administration of all towns and municipalities in Nigeria. Townships were classified into three by this Ordinance, namely, first, second and third class.

Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital, Aro, Abeokuta
Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital, Aro, Abeokuta

Lagos was the only firstclass town ship in the country. Abeokuta was one of the twelve secondclass townships in the Southern part of the country in 1919, while ljebuOde and llaro in Ogun State were two out of about fifty thirdclass town ships in the country at that time (thirtyeight in the south, twelve in the north). This classification had implications for the classes of townships in the allocation of modern urban utilities and basic infrastructure.

Two of the three townships classified in the state (Abeokuta and ljebuOde) had water supply systems in 1950, while only Abeokuta had electricity installations at that time (Mabogunje, 1968). The situations of the towns and cities in the state are really not much bet ter in the year 2000 because the glorified water and electricity projects in most of the towns never function properly.

Aerial View of Abeokuta, with Ogun River in the foreground
Aerial View of Abeokuta, with Ogun River in the foreground

Only three LGA groups, namely, Abeokuta North and South, ljebu North and Sagamu, had more than fifty per cent urban population in 1976 and 1990 . The total proportion of urban population for the state was 37.4 per cent in 1990.

The only other LGA group that did better than the state proportion is ljebuOde (36.1 per cent in 1976 and 43.7 per cent in 1990). Four of the LGA groups had zero urban population in 1976 and 1990. These are ljebu East, ObafemiOwode, Ogun Waterside and Odeda LGA groups.

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