Districts of Sierra Leone
Fabien Antoine sent me news of a change to the capital of Western Rural district.
The secondary administrative divisions of Sierra Leone are districts. The tertiary divisions are chiefdoms. Here is a
map showing the chiefdoms, and here
is a whole pack
- District: Except Western, which is an "area" at both the provincial
and district level.
- HASC: Hierarchical administrative subdivision codes. The middle two
letters identify the
province. For key, see "Administrative Subdivisions
- Plates: First two letters on license plates issued in the district.
Western has WR for rural and WU for urban, i.e. Freetown.
- Pop-2004: 2004-12 census (provisional results)
- Population and Area: From "Sierra Leone Government Annual
Statistical Digest, 1995 Edition". Populations are 1985 census. These
are obviously rounded numbers, and the province totals given in
"Administrative Subdivisions of Countries" are probably more accurate.
- The districts were the primary divisions of Sierra Leone from 1896 to 1920, and their history during that period is given on the
Provinces of Sierra Leone page.
- 1920: Sierra Leone reorganized into three provinces and one colony. The provinces were Central, divided into Kenema, Kono, Moyamba, and
Pendembu districts; Northern, consisting of Bombali, Karene, Koinadugu, and Port Loko districts; and Southern, comprising Pujehun, Sembehun,
Shebar, and Sumbuya districts. The colony was approximately equivalent to the present-day Western area.
- 1922: Mano River district split from Pujehun.
- 1925: Ronietta district formed from parts of Bombali and Port Loko.
- ~1925: Name of Sembehun district changed to Gbangbama (?).
- 1928: Ronietta district divided between Bombali and Port Loko, restoring the pre-1925 situation there. Panguma district formed from parts
of Kenema, Kono, and Pendembu. Kambia district formed from parts of Karene and Port Loko.
- 1931: Central province merged with Southern. Name of Pendembu district changed to Kailahun. Panguma district split between Kailahun and
Kenema. Mano River district, and part of Sumbuya, merged with Pujehun. Bonthe district formed from Shebar and parts of Sumbuya and
Gbangbama. Bo district formed from parts of Kenema, Moyamba, and the last remaining fragment of Sumbuya. The remaining parts of Gbangbama
and Moyamba districts merged, taking the name Moyamba.
- 1936: Tonkolili district formed from parts of Bombali and Koinadugu.
- 1949: Karene district merged with northern part of Bombali; southern part of Bombali merged with Tonkolili.
- Source for all of this information is "Sierra Leone in Maps", by J. I. Clarke, University of London Press, 1969. The districts seem to have
remained unchanged since 1949.
- 2009-10: Capital of Western Rural district moved from Freetown to Waterloo.