Uhuru vs Kibaki score on economy revealed

President Uhuru Kenyatta. FILE PHOTO | NMG Kenyans’ financial situation is worse off compared to their economic wellbeing during former President Mwai Kibaki’s regime, according to the latest Prosperity Index.

The index, set to be launched today by the Legatum Institute, a London-based think-tank, gives Kenya a score of 37.5 compared to 39.3 in 2009 on economic quality—which measures the strength of the economy in generating wealth for its workforce.

Kenya was pulled down by mounting public debt and reduced savings among its workforce plagued by job cuts, stagnant wages in a business environment where companies have ushered in austerity measures to protect profits.

This has hurt cash flow, translating to lower demand for goods in corporate Kenya and reduced savings, which is captured by bank accounts having more than Sh100,000 dropping for the first time in 13 years.

Legatum ranks Kenya at position 135 among 167 countries on economic quality compared to 101 in 2009, but places the country at position 113 on the ranks of the world’s most prosperous nations based on the Prosperity Index.

The index ranks nations on 12 key indicators, including wealth, health, education and personal freedom.

Kenya’s prosperity score stood at 50.5 this year, up from 47.1 in 2009, suggesting that the current regime has done better on other indicators outside economic wellbeing Legatum says it is trying to encourage the consideration of factors such as health, freedom, security and political governance as keys to prosperity, rather than material wealth alone.

By using a 10-year score, Legatum’s research, which is backed by data from the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the International Labour Organisation, captures year two of the second terms of both the Kibaki and President Uhuru Kenyatta regimes.

The Kenyatta regime had better scores on health, education, personal freedom and investments environment.

Kenya’s health score increased to 64.5 this year compared to 55.7 on increased coverage of health facilities and increased focus on preventative measures such as immunisation.

Living conditions Education’s score improved to 51.9 from 49.7 due to enhanced digital skills following the introduction of the laptops for schools plan, high post-secondary school enrolment and women staying longer in learning institutions.Despite a drop in financial situations, Kenyans’ living conditions improved to 49.3 from 42.1, says Legatum while citing increased access to electricity, piped water, digital payments and clean fuel like cooking gas.The Kenyatta regime also scored big on boosting the business environment, earning a score of […]

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