Population reached 3.09 million
As of May 1, 2000, the total population of Western Mindanao which covers the provinces of Basilan (including Isabela City), Zamboanga del Norte, and Zamboanga del Sur; and the city of Zamboanga, was 3,091,208 persons. This implied an increase of 296,549 persons over the 1995 census figure or an average annual population growth rate of 2.18 percent, slightly lower than the annual population growth rate recorded during the 1990 to 1995 period (2.42 percent). If the average annual growth rate continues at 2.18 percent, the population of the region is expected to double in 32 years, increasing on the average, by 67,388 persons a year or about eight persons per hour.
Dependency ratio was 77 percent
In Western Mindanao region, about 57 percent of its total population belonged to productive ages or economically active population (15 to 64 years old). On the other hand, the young dependents (aged 0 to 14 years) accounted for about 40 percent while more than three percent were old dependents (aged 65 years and over). The overall dependency ratio in 2000 was 77. This meant that for every 100 persons aged 15 to 64 years, there were about 77 dependents, i.e., 71 young dependents and six old dependents.
Western Mindanao had a median age of 20 years
Western Mindanao had a median age of 20 years. This meant that in 2000, half of the population were below 20 years old. In 1995, the median age was 19 years. Zamboanga City had the highest median age of 20 years, followed by Basilan and Zamboanga del Norte, (both 19 years). On the other hand, Zamboanga del Sur had the youngest at 18 years.
Sex ratio recorded at 103
In 2000, the sex ratio in Western Mindanao was recorded at 103. This meant that in this region, there were 103 males for every 100 females.
Close to seven in ten persons were Roman Catholics
Majority (65 percent) of the household population in Western Mindanao region were Roman Catholics. This was followed by Islam (18 percent) and Evangelicals (five percent). The remaining 12 percent belonged to other religions that include Seventh Day Adventist, Iglesia ni Cristo or other religions.
Average number of children ever born was three
In Western Mindanao, ever-married women in reproductive ages (15 to 49 years) had at least three children ever born during their reproductive period. This meant that on the average, there were three children ever born in every ever-married woman aged 15 to 49 years. The number of births was relatively low at the younger age group 15-19 years and continue to increase as they became older.
Average age at first marriage was 20 years
In Western Mindanao, the average age at first marriage was 20 years. Among the provinces and one highly urbanized city in Western Mindanao, Zamboanga del Norte and Zamboanga City had the oldest average age at first marriage (21 years) while the provinces of Basilan and Zamboanga del Sur had 20 years.
Half of the overseas workers were below 26 years old
In 2000, there were 24,107 overseas contract workers or about 0.78 percent of the total population. It was noted that among them, females (61 percent) outnumbered their male counterparts (39 percent). The median age of overseas workers in Western Mindanao was 26 years. This meant that half of the overseas workers were below 26 years old. Female overseas workers had a median age of 24 years while their male counterparts had 30 years.
Four in every nine households used community water system for drinking and/or cooking
The main source of water used for drinking and/or cooking by the households was community water system accounting for about 44 percent. More than 19 percent of the total number of households in Western Mindanao Region had their own faucet and about 25 percent shared faucet from community water system for drinking and/or cooking. Zamboanga City had the highest proportion (68 percent) of households which drew water for drinking and/or cooking from community water system while the province of Zamboanga del Norte had the lowest with about 29 percent of its total households. However, about 20 percent of the households in the region still depended on spring, lake, river, rain, etc., as their main source of water for drinking and/or cooking.
Over half of the households used kerosene for lighting
In Western Mindanao, over half (52 percent) of the total households used Kerosene or Gaas for their lighting needs. Only about 43 percent used electricity as their main source for lighting. Zamboanga City had the highest proportion (72 percent) of households that used electricity. On the other hand, the province of Zamboanga del Norte had the lowest proportion with more than 34 percent of its total households.
Most households burned their garbage
Of the total households, about 52 percent preferred burning as their usual manner of garbage disposal. More than 12 percent of the households had their garbage picked up by garbage truck while about 20 percent dumped their garbage in individual pit. The rest of the households disposed their kitchen garbage either by composting, burying or feeding to animals.
Most households owned radio/cassette
Of the total 595,831 households in Western Mindanao, about 71 percent had at least one household convenience. A large proportion of the total households (68 percent) had radio/cassette and more than about 27 percent had television set. About five percent reported to have telephone or cellular phone while more than eight percent had motorized vehicle.
Two in every five households owned a land
In 2000, more than 41 percent of the total households in Western Mindanao owned a land. One-third of the households had an agricultural land (this included three percent of households who acquired the land through Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) or were Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries (ARB)). About 15 percent had residential land other than where the households currently resided and 3.25 percent, land other than residential and agricultural.
Three in every four households owned/amortized the houses they occupied
Of the total 595,831 households in Western Mindanao, about 73 percent owned or amortized the houses they occupied; 17 percent, occupied for free with consent of owner; and more than five percent were renter.