Are you sad? Don’t worry you are not alone, at least not in Kenya. According to Legatum Prosperity Index that measures how happy or sad citizens of a country are based on metrics such as Economy, Entrepreneurship and Opportunity, Governance, Education, Health, Safety and Security, Personal Freedom, and Social Capita, Kenya is the 27th saddest country out of 142 countries investigated.

In 2009 when Legatum started measuring the Prosperity Index, Kenya was at position 97 but over the years Kenya has slumbered to lower positions namely position 104 in the year 2010, position 102 in 2011, and position 116 both in 2012 and 2013. Legatum reports;

Kenya dropped three places, to 116th, in overall prosperity. The Social Capital sub-index increased by eleven places to 73rd, due to an increase in the ability to rely on others, the willingness to help a stranger, and an increase in religious attendance. The Safety & Security sub-index ranks a low 127th, due to an increase in property being stolen, state sponsored violence, and group grievances, and a decrease in the perception of being able to safely walk home alone at night.

In relation to neighbors, Kenya is one place better than Tanzania but two places worse than Uganda. Compared to Norway which is the most prosperous hence happiest country on earth for the 5th time running, 67% of Norwegians think that it is a good time to find a job in Norway whereas only 35% of Kenyans think so of Kenya.

Only 29.7% of Norwegians think that corruption in businesses and government is widespread against 89.3% of Kenyans. Kenyans are only good when it comes to taking care of others where 83.1% think that they can rely on others in times of need. Wait a minute, Norway still beats us hands down on this too as 94.8% of Norwegians can rely on others in times of need. Finally it is better to start up a business in Norway as business start up cost is only 1.7% of GNI per capita in Norway whereas the figure rises to 40.4% of GNI per capita in Kenya.

Ranking based on the other sub-indices places Kenya in position 113 economically, position 97 on Entrepreneurship and Business Opportunities, position 108 on Governance (26.6% of Kenyans said they were satisfied with government efforts to address poverty and 28.8% were satisfied with elections), position 115 on education (1 teacher per 47 pupils), 117 on health, position 127 on Safety and Security, position 98 on Personal Freedom (I thought we were a very free state) and lastly Kenya is position 73 on social capita (at least majority of Kenyans help strangers at 65% against global average of 47.9%).

Now that there are a lot of happy people thanks to Kenya turning 50 I think the Prosperity must have climbed several steps higher.


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