Green right-pointing arrow, symbol of external website.External site
graph Graph



According to the National Statistics Coordination Board, Cagayan de Oro had 602,088 people as of May 2010.

A large portion of the population is concentrated in downtown Cagayan de Oro, along the coastline and near river banks, sometimes dangerously close to the banks. The poorest and informal settlers usually occupy these areas.

Since the establishment of Xavier Estates in upper Carmen, other subdivisions have been constructed on high ground, such as Pueblo de Oro, Teakwood Hills and Alegria Hills.

Most people can understand English. Francisco (left) is a worker at The Stoneware Pottery, Inc. in Bulua. He spent six months in Germany to study advanced stoneware throwing technique. His knowledge in English made it easy for him to learn a little German as well.


Population            602,088 As of May 2010
Population Density (persons/sq. km.)                 1,458.55 As of May 2010
Average Annual Population Growth Rate                  2.69 2000-2010
Source:Green right-pointing arrow, symbol of external website. National Statistical Coordination Board of Region 10 and National Statistics Office

In 2007, among the 80 barangays, Carmen has the biggest population of 52,633, which constitutes 9 percent of the total population of Cagayan de Oro. The rest of the barangays have the following percent share:

  • Lapasan, 7
  • Kauswagan, 6
  • Balulang, 6
  • Poblacion (40 barangays), 6
  • Bugo, 5
  • Bulua, 5
  • Gusa, 4
  • Camamanan, 4
  • Macasandig, 4
  • Macabalan, 4
  • The other 30 barangays, 40

Source: The National Statistical Coordination Board

Primary language is Cebuano, then Tagalog, English, Fookien. The native population is mixed with Chinese, Spanish migrants, but Spanish is not a major language. Spanish words are present in most languages in the Philippines, however.

There are a few American, Japanese, German and Indian settlers. The recent entry of a large group of Koreans is a national phenomenon.
The Koreans have established stores, a restaurant, a hotel -- Hotel Koresco in Pueblo de Oro -- and a school in barangay Taguanao.

The early settlers of Cagayan de Oro were animists. Today, most are Roman Catholic. The rest are Protestants and Muslims. There is a small community of Buddhists.

Many schools have religious foundations. The first school in Cagayan de Oro is Ateneo de Cagayan, now Xavier University. It is run by the Jesuits. Kong Hua School, Pilgrim Christian College, and Lourdes College are run by religious groups.

It is not clear if people are getting more or less religious, but only a few Filipinos support the Catholic position of the reproductive health bill (RH Bill). A report in October 8, 2010 indicates that Green right-pointing arrow, symbol of external, majority of Filipinos support the RH Bill despite opposition by the Roman Catholic clergy. Conservatives campaigned strongly against what called "Team Patay" senatorial candidates but many of these candidates won in the May 2013 election. The Philippines Star reported Green right-pointing arrow, symbol of external website."94% of pro-RH bill winning".

A large number of people in Cagayan de Oro and abroad became dissatisfied with the administration of mayor Vicente Y. Emano in 2011 after typhoon Sendong struck the city. Many residents accused Emano of being responsible for the deaths of hundreds because Emano, despite a written warning from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), did not evacuate the residents of flood areas, such as Tibasak, Isla de Oro, and portions of Balulang.

A few days after the disaster, three large Facebook egroups became saturated with angry comments against Emano and several councilors, accusing them of being involved in destructive flush mining in the mountains. Some suggested occupying city hall. A few expressed violent remedies. A group led by businessmen Tito Mora organized a signature campaign to oust Emano. The campaign generated 38,000 verified signatures, falling short of 45,000 required by the Commission on Elections (Comelec).

Atty. James Judith has also filed an administrative case against Emano in relation to his alleged negligence of duty before, during, and after Sendong. The Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) under the new secretary Mar Roxas responded by asking Emano to answer complaints on September 10 and 11, 2012 but nothing resulted from this inquiry.

Abroad, the most politically-active organization of Cagayanons are in British Columbia, Canada. In 2003, they issued a statement criticizing Emano's destruction of the Huluga archaeological site. In Sept. 2012, the same group wrote a letter to President Benigno S. Aquino III "in support of the resolution filed by Archbishop Antonio Ledesma calling for an investigation into the root cause of the Sendong disaster." Goldstar Daily has a full report on the letter.

Tito MoraTito Mora lead led a signature campaign to suspend mayor Vicente Y. Emano after hundreds of people allowed by Emano to live in flood areas were killed by typhoon Sendong.

Emano lost in the May 13, 2013 election. Former governor of Misamis Oriental, Oscar Moreno, is the new mayor of Cagayan de Oro.