Lesotho has a uniform population, which is for the most part made up of the Bantu people of Basotho. In the country there are also small groups of Bantu people Xhosa and Zulu as well as people of European or Asian descent. Because Lesotho is so mountainous, most residents live crowded on the narrow and low-lying strip of land to the west as well as the valley of the Orange River.
Almost three-quarters of the population live in the countryside, but immigration to the cities is high because it is becoming increasingly difficult to support themselves in agriculture (see Agriculture and Fisheries).
- COUNTRYAAH.COM: Key populations estimated size and data of Lesotho, including population density of how many people per square mile. Also included are facts for population and language.
The increase in population has been rapid since independence in 1968, but since the 1990s it has been significantly slowed down by the severe AIDS epidemic (see Social conditions). For the same reason, life expectancy has dropped from 54 years in the mid-1990s to 45 in 2010.
A large proportion of Lesotho men work in South Africa, mainly in mines, while the women stay at home to take care of agriculture and households. Despite this, the culture is still male-dominated, as each village usually has a male chieftain who decides on important matters, such as how the agricultural and pasture lands should be distributed.
Most lesbians speak the bantu language sesotho, but English is also an official language and is used in higher education in school education. In the border areas against South Africa, the Zulu and Xhosa bantu languages are also spoken.
FACTS – POPULATION AND LANGUAGE
Number of residents
Number of residents per square kilometer
Percentage of residents in the cities
27.7 percent (2017)
Nativity / birth
27.9 per 1000 residents (2016)
Mortality / mortality
12.7 per 1000 residents (2016)
1.3 percent (2017)
3.1 number of births per woman (2016)
Percentage of women
51.4 percent (2017)
54 years (2016)
Life expectancy for women
56 years (2016)
Life expectancy for men
52 years (2016)
Sesotho and English are official languages
Free for HIV testing
The government offers all lesbian citizens free HIV tests.
The ruling party wins local elections
The first local elections since independence in 1966 are held. Representatives of 129 local parishes are elected in general elections. Several opposition parties boycott the local elections, which they feel are too poorly prepared. The Lesotho Democratic Congress (LCD) government wins 76 percent of seats.