The population of Sierra Leone is made up of approximately sixteen tribal groups. The Temne and Mende are the largest, comprising over 60% of the population. The Krio, a small group descended from freed slaves who settled in Freetown in the eighteenth century, have traditions that more closely resemble Western culture, and Krio often play key roles in governance.
Annual population growth is about 2%. Sixty percent of the population lives in rural areas.