Unemployment in Kenya
Unemployment, corruption and high cost of living rates among key issues.

Almost half of Kenyans say life has become tougher as they grapple with unemployment, the soaring cost of living and corruption, a new survey shows.

The study, released Sunday by Nairobi-based research firm Infotrak, says that 47 per cent of Kenyans are experiencing their worst economic times with those in the Coast, Nyanza, Western and North Eastern regions being the most affected. “Fourty-seven per cent of Kenyans stated that they are currently living the worst possible life ever,” the report says.

The country is grappling with mass unemployment, especially among the youth, as the economy lags in jobs creation. The report says that weakening fortunes of Kenyan households has dampened expectations. Corruption tops the list of concerns for Kenyans at 32 per cent, followed by unemployment at 17.3 per cent while the high cost of living is third at 12.1 per cent.

“If you are looking for a life that is average, neither too bad nor too good, then you are advised to move to Central, Rift Valley or Nairobi,” the study says.

Overall, slightly over five in every 10 people (53 per cent) feel that the country is headed in the wrong direction. This is, however, lower than in November last year when 62 per cent of polled Kenyans felt that the country was on the wrong socio-economic path.

The new study was conducted between March 6 and 10 and involved 1,800 respondents across the country. Half of those polled in coastal towns said they were living their worst possible life while 47.5 of those in Western said as much.

By contrast, only 29 per cent in Central region cited tough living conditions, 38 per cent in Rift Valley and 40 per cent in Nairobi. Other concerns for Kenyans are insecurity at 10 per cent, quality of education (nine per cent), and infrastructure or roads.


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