Population: Imo State has a population of 2,485,499 persons. The population density varies from 230 persons per sq. km. in Oguta/Egbema area, to about 1,400 persons per sq. km. in Mbaise, Orlu, Mbano and Mbaitoli areas.
This high popula tion density has led to intensified pressure on land, forests and other natural resources, leading to increasing rural poverty which is characteristic of densely populated rural areas.
Fallow period rarely exceeds one year and in some areas continuous cropping is the rule. Low crop yield and loss of land to erosion have combined to induce people to migrate in search of jobs and even farmland in other parts of the country.
Rural Settlement Patterns: The population of Imo State is predominantly rural. Some of the most densely settled areas of Nigeria are found in Imo State, where a direct relationship exists between population density and the degree of dispersal of rural settlement. In Mbaise, Owerri, Orlu. Mbano ern part of the state. Imo State has two major lakes Oguta Lake in Oguta and Abadaba Lake in Obowo.
Climate And Vegetation: The climate of Imo State is typically humid (lieoma and Arunsi, 1990). and Mbaitoli, virtually every parcel of the land is set tled, and one village merges imperceptibly into another. However, in the OgutaEgbema axis, the people live in nucleated villages and hamlets due to the riverine nature of the terrain.
Urban Development: The major urban cen tres in Imo State are Owerri, Orlu and Okigwe. Masterplans and development plans were prepared by the state government to guide development with in the capital territory, Owerri. However, eleven local government headquarters and twentyseven growth points were demarcated for urban development within the major urban centres Owerri, Okigwe and Orlu.
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