January 26, 2010
70% of Rwanda’s population are women.
The video’s wording was “after the 1994 genocide which killed many men, women made up 70% of the population.” It did not say women currently make up 70% of the population. While I doubt the veracity of the statement concerning the immediate aftermath of the genocide (men and women fled), the title of the video is misleading. According to all the sources I checked there is no 70-30 gender balance in Rwanda.
According to the CIA's world factbook the sex ratio is roughly even .99 to 1. While I don't always trust my government, the CIA's web info is usually pretty solid.
The logic behind the 70% statistic is simplistic (it is the result of the genocide) and I suspect the figure is based on speculation not research. The genocide targeted women as well as man, thus CIA figures indicate there are roughly the same number of men as women 15-65. The statistic is especially problematic when 42% of the population is under 15 (the genocide occurred 16 years ago). Rwanda ranks #22 in global fertility.
For 70% to work, (assuming under 15 is roughly even) you would need such a large gender imbalance that even the CIA (or anyone doing serious demographic work) would not be able to miss it. (My back of the envelope stats say a million men to 5 million women– remember 2 million boys and 2 million girls out of 10 million total).
Only among the elderly (65+) is there a large sex imbalance 100,000 versus 150,000. the elderly only make up 2.4% of the population.
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