Majority of Iligan's people come from the Visayas and migrants from other places of Mindanao.
With a population today of 225,935 of a varied cultural mix, Iligan has 44 barangays. Highly urbanized, Iligan has an urban population of 69,087 and a rural population of 156,848. The most populous barangays are Tubod, with 22,449 residents; Mahayahay, 15,932; and Hinaplanon, 14,322.
In the 1950s when Iligan's famous Maria Cristina Falls became a major source of electricity, Iligan's population increased rapidly.
Taking advantage of this bountiful source of cheap power, Iligan saw the establishment of various industries that boosted its economic and trade possibilities.
The city boasts of a labor force of about 52 percent of its population which is 99 percent Roman Catholic. It enjoys a high literacy rate of 95 percent. Although English and Tagalog are widely understood and spoken, Cebuano is spoken by 92 percent of its population.
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