Earnings and employment problems in the agricultural
sector have previously led to large relocation to the Ivory
Coast and Ghana. Due to economic problems in neighboring
countries, many emigrants have returned in recent years and
thus contributed to the population increase in recent times.
In 2019, 29 percent of the population lived in cities, the
largest of which were Ouagadougou (2.5 million residents,
2019) and Bobo-Dioulasso (1 million).
Countryaah, the population of Burkina Faso consists of about 15
larger and some 50 smaller ethnic groups, almost all of whom
feed on hack farming in combination with small scale
livestock management. Base crops are millet and sorghum, and
maize, peanuts, beans and vegetables are grown, as well as
cotton for sale.
The largest group is mossi (8.4 million), who live in the
central and northern parts of the country. The Mossi people
were previously organized in four traditional kingdoms
(Yatenga, Ouagadougou, Tenkodogo and Fada Ngourma).
Culturally related to the moss are gurma (880,000) in the
east, kurumba (260,000) in the north and bisexual (514,000)
in the south, against the border with Togo. West of the
mossi range is in northern samo (173,000) and land
(364,000), which are culturally related to bamboo in Mali,
and in southern gurunsi (750,000).
The southern and western parts of the country are
inhabited by a number of tribal people who are acephal, ie.
lacks formal political leadership; biggest is bobo (also
called bwa) (445,000), which together with senufo (250,000,
and over 2.5 million in Mali and Ivory Coast) are known for
their dance masks, which are used for initiation rites and
ceremonies in secret societies. In the south, towards the
border with Ghana and Ivory Coast, live the culturally
related peoples lobi (258,000), dagari (471,000) and birifor
(188,000), who fought with great perseverance against the
colonization of their territory by the French and who still
today was very little affected by both Islam and
In addition to the agricultural peoples, there are
livestock- feeding fulani (1.2 million) in the country's
north-east and the trading people Dyula (305,000), who speak
a dialect of Malinke and are found throughout much of West
Africa. Both of these groups are 100% Muslim. If a
substantial part of an agricultural group begins to engage
in trade and turns to Islam, the term dyula is often added
to the group's name (eg bobo-dyula, dagari-duyla).
In Burkina Faso, some sixty native languages are
spoken, all of which belong to the Niger-Congo languages
(mainly the Gur, Mande and Atlantic languages). The
largest languages are moore (53% of the population),
fulani (13%?) And dyula (10%), all of which are used as
interpersonal languages. The official language is the
colonial language, French. See further Population above.
The first Catholic missionaries came to this part of
Africa, which was then under French control, in 1900. In
1919, Burkina Faso became a French colony named Upper Volta.
The country became independent in 1960.
In 2010, 22% of the population was stated to be
Christian, 54% Muslim and 24% adherent to traditional
Burkina Faso is a republic of democratic and secular
state, which also entails a high degree of religious freedom
and a low degree of state regulation of the religious