Singular or Plural?

Some words can go either way, depending on how they fit into your sentence. I ran into this pair of sentences in an excellent book I just finished, page 217:

The estimated global migrant population is about 244 million, about 3.3% of global population. In other words, 96.7% of humanity continue to reside in their country of birth.

A population (of 224 million) gets a perfectly correct singular verb even though it refers to millions of people (“population” is singular; 224 million is the object of “of.”). But then we have “humanity,” also a singular noun, in front of a plural verb, “continue.”

What’s up? Well, “humanity” is the object of “of,” so it doesn’t count. The actual subject of the verb is “percent.” I guess being 96.7 percent is strong enough to make it a plural.

What do you think?