Top 5 African Countries with Female Majority

In a notable demographic phenomenon, some African countries exhibit a gender disparity with more women than men. This intriguing gender imbalance has far-reaching implications, and here we explore the top 5 African nations where women outnumber men.





Female:Male Ratio


30 million





33 million





2.6 million





2.1 million





1.1 million




Mozambique's Majority Female Population

With approximately 30 million inhabitants, Mozambique has a notably imbalanced gender ratio - 51.44% of the population is female while 48.56% is male. Several key factors have contributed to the country having significantly more women than men:

  • High male mortality rates due to poverty, inadequate health systems, and the devastating impacts of the HIV/AIDS epidemic
  • Labour migration patterns where men leave rural areas for jobs in cities or neighbouring countries, leaving behind female partners 

Mozambique's skewed demographics have profound social and economic consequences:

  • Healthcare systems are overwhelmed, particularly maternal health services for the large population of women of childbearing age
  • Girls' education is deprioritized as they are needed for domestic duties with fewer men to provide for households
  • The formal and agricultural workforce is depleted of male workers, hindering economic growth
  • Women are disproportionately vulnerable with inadequate male protection and support 

As one of the least developed nations, Mozambique continues to grapple with the root causes of gender imbalance, including poverty reduction and health system strengthening. Creatively harnessing the economic and social potential of its female majority remains an ongoing challenge and necessity.

Angola's Shifting Male-Female Ratio

Angola, located in south-central Africa, is endowed with extensive oil and mineral resources yet poverty remains endemic. The country has experienced dramatic swings in its male to female ratio over recent decades:

  • In 1970, Angola had 106.56 males for every 100 females due to high female mortality during the liberation struggle. 
  • By 2015, life expectancy improvements brought the ratio to 97.82 males per 100 females.
  • However, in 2018 the ratio reversed to 104.044 females per 100 males.

Several factors account for Angola's fluctuating gender makeup:

  • Prolonged armed conflict claimed more male lives.
  • Male migration to cities and abroad seeking jobs leaves more women in rural areas. 
  • The HIV/AIDS epidemic has disproportionately affected males.

With unpredictable demographics, Angola faces challenges:

  • Socially, imbalance skews marriage prospects, fertility rates, and family structures.
  • Economically, productivity suffers if male labour is insufficient. 

Achieving enduring gender parity will enable Angola to leverage its human capital. Policymakers must continue addressing the health, social, and economic conditions underpinning gender imbalance.

Namibia's Greater Number of Women

Namibia's estimated 2.6 million people are disproportionately female, with 105.776 women for every 100 men. This gender imbalance has distinct origins and implications:

  • High HIV/AIDS rates account for greater male mortality in Namibia.
  • Labour migration pulls men to cities, mines, and farms, leaving more women in rural areas.

With fewer male partners and providers, Namibian women have necessarily taken on greater responsibility for:

  • Heading households and rearing children alone
  • Generating income through informal trade and agriculture
  • Filling leadership gaps in communities and civil society

While presenting socioeconomic challenges, Namibia's female majority offers possibilities to:

  • Target healthcare and education access for women and girls 
  • Promote women into formal politics and business 
  • Leverage women's networks for development

As a young democracy since 1990, Namibia continues adapting to its unique gender makeup. More actively embracing its female majority could accelerate national growth.

Lesotho's Female Majority Population

The small, landlocked nation of Lesotho has 106.182 women for every 100 men, ranking 31st globally. A striking 50.8% of the population is female. Key factors in this imbalance are:

  • High male mortality as migrant miners in South Africa are exposed to workplace hazards and HIV.
  • The HIV/AIDS epidemic has claimed many working-age men's lives.

With lower male availability, Lesotho's women shoulder immense responsibilities:

  • Heading households alone and providing childcare
  • Managing small farms and livestock
  • Running informal businesses and vendors

However, some positives emerge from the female majority:

  • Women play leading roles in community organisation and civil activism.
  • Female representation is rising in parliament and government. 

If supported and empowered, Lesotho's many women could catalyse:

  • Economic growth through small business
  • Educational gains by keeping girls in school 
  • Political voice to advance women's rights

Leveraging the influence of Lesotho's female population majority represents a path to gender equity and national development.

Eswatini's Youthful, Woman-Skewed Population

The Kingdom of Eswatini, formerly Swaziland, has a population of 1.1 million that is disproportionately female and youthful:

  • 50.98% of the population are women and girls 
  • There are 106.375 females for every 100 males
  • High HIV prevalence has driven greater mortality among males
  • Despite a low life expectancy of 58 years, Eswatini's population skews young

This demographic profile has significant effects:

  • With fewer men, households and agriculture rely heavily on female labour
  • Younger women bear the burden of AIDS deaths and orphan care
  • Limited economic options make women and girls vulnerable to exploitation

To leverage its youth and women for development, strategic priorities for Eswatini include:

  • Expanding educational access for girls to boost economic participation
  • Improving maternal healthcare and HIV prevention outreach 
  • Increasing economic and political opportunities for women
  • Educating and empowering young women and girls

With targeted policy efforts, Eswatini can capitalise on its youthful female majority for national growth. But achieving enduring gender equity remains imperative.


Which African countries have more women than men?

The top 5 African countries with more women than men are Mozambique, Angola, Namibia, Lesotho, Eswatini.

What is the gender ratio in these countries?

These countries have a higher proportion of women in their populations, resulting in more women than men. The specific gender ratios may vary.

What factors contribute to this gender imbalance?

Several factors can contribute to a gender imbalance, including migration, life expectancy differences, and social and economic factors unique to each country.

How does having more women than men impact these countries?

The gender imbalance can have social, economic, and cultural implications, such as affecting labour force dynamics, marriage patterns, and family structures.

Is this gender imbalance a recent trend in these countries?

Gender imbalances can evolve over time, influenced by changing demographics and societal factors. The extent and direction of change may vary among countries.

Are there any initiatives or policies to address this imbalance?

Some countries may implement policies or programs to address gender imbalances and promote gender equality, but these initiatives can differ from one nation to another.

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