NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 9 – A new survey by Infortrak Research firm has listed residents of Makueni County as the happiest in the country, at 64.4 percent attributing the findings to a calm political environment and their involvement in development projects.
The firm’s Chief Executive Officer Angela Ambitho says Makueni is followed by West Pokot and Machakos at 62.4 and 62.1 percent respectively.
“Makueni County was at number 43 in our first index report and that is because the county government was going through hard times from the County Assembly but now that they have stability it has resulted into peaceful coexistence which gives the county residents a sense of calm,” Ambitho said.
Mombasa, Nairobi, Trans Nzoia and Taita Taveta Counties are bottom 4, whose happiness index is low at 52.6 percent, 52.5 percent, 52.0 percent and 48.9 percent respectively.
Lack of public participation in what is happening in the counties and unhealthy politicking was attributed to low happiness index in these counties
“These may be the counties that are concentrating very hard in giving you the roads and other development projects but may not have incorporated their residents like Makueni has. So the soft issues that actually contribute to how happy you are have not been factored,” said Ambitho.
Overall, the country’s happiness index is rated at 57.3 percent.
Last month, the Mental Health Taskforce Chairperson Dr Frank Njenga recommended that an independent mental health commission be formed to monitor people’s happiness levels and provide a report annually indicating reasons for their happiness or lack of it.
The World Happiness Report is a landmark survey of the state of global happiness that ranks 156 countries by how happy their citizens perceive themselves to be.