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Kenyans on X believe that our unhappiness stems from being broke – Poll

Kenya’s standing in the global happiness index has taken a downward turn, according to the latest edition of the World Happiness Report for 2024.

The annual report, which surveys 143 countries, shows that Kenya ranks 114th, down three places from its position of 111th in the previous year’s report.

This reversal marks a departure from a five-year trend of steadily improving scores for the country.

The study didn’t explain why Kenya’s happiness score fell in 2023, even though tough economic times, including rising inflation and new taxes, have affected many households.

In Kenya, people were frustrated by increased taxes, lower wages for workers and high prices for everyday items.

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The report’s findings have prompted reflection and discussion among Kenyans, and Nairobi News conducted a survey to gauge public sentiment on the issue.

Respondents were asked to share their insights on why they thought Kenyans were not happy. The results of the poll revealed a variety of perspectives:

Financial strain
A significant majority, 82.3% of respondents, cited financial challenges as a major cause of unhappiness. Economic hardship and financial instability appear to be weighing heavily on the minds of many Kenyans.

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Character Development
A smaller percentage, 6.3% of respondents, cited concerns related to character development. This suggests that heartbreaks and emotional disappointments are not a major factor in their unhappiness and rather personal growth and self-improvement may play a role in the overall happiness of some individuals.

Health concerns
A minority, 4.2% of respondents, identified health issues as a contributing factor to unhappiness. Physical and mental health problems are likely to affect the well-being of certain sections of the population.

No opinion
A proportion of respondents, 7.3%, chose not to give an opinion.

Anyhow, in the regional bloc, Kenya outperformed its neighbours Uganda, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Egypt and Zambia, which came 117th, 131st, 130th, 127th and 134th respectively.

The researchers determined these rankings by asking people in the countries surveyed to assess and rate their quality of life, with a score of 10 representing the best possible life and zero representing the worst possible condition.