A recent report by TIFA Research has revealed that Kenyans are facing more brutal economic and financial hardships compared to a year ago when former President Uhuru Kenyatta transferred power to the current Head of State, William Ruto.
The TIFA report, which was released on Tuesday, September 12, paints a bleak picture of the country, revealing that a staggering twenty-five million Kenyans are currently grappling with abject poverty due to severe economic challenges.
This disheartening news about the economic conditions in Kenya is ironic considering the Kenya Kwanza government rose to power on the promise of addressing the high cost of living affecting ‘the hustlers’.
The report underscores the widespread deteriorating living standards among Kenyan households, with a striking 53 percent believing that their situation has worsened in the past year.
This sentiment is shared not only by supporters of President William Ruto but also by a significant majority of opposition supporters (70 %), as well as those who identify as neutrals with no political alignment (56 %).
Declining household income and high taxes
Furthermore, TIFA Research’s findings reveal a sharp decline in household income in Kenya.
The crippling effects of skyrocketing inflation and a devastating drought that swept through the country early in 2023 have hit the poorest households the hardest. This has resulted in a troubling increase in income inequality, further dividing the rich and poor within the nation.
The report’s data underscores the economic hardship faced by a significant portion of the population. It revealed that a majority (53 %) of income earners reported monthly earnings of less than Ksh20,000.
These findings serve as a stark indicator that many households are now struggling even more to meet their basic needs, a deeply concerning trend for Kenya’s overall economic health.
The report underscores the urgent need for the government to implement robust social safety net programs aimed at providing financial assistance to the country’s most vulnerable citizens.
High taxation is a major concern among respondents, prompting calls for a reduction in taxes and levies on essential goods and services, a move previously instituted during former President Uhuru’s administration.