Insecurity top concern for Kenyans, study shows

The biggest concern for Kenyans is insecurity, a new study has revealed.

The survey, carried out by Afrobarometer, a pan-African non-partisan research network that conducts public attitude surveys on democracy and governance, aimed at establishing the biggest concerns for African countries that governments should address. It was conducted in 32 African countries.

Insecurity topped the concerns of Kenyans at 41 per cent, with unemployment being Kenyans' second biggest concern at 31 per cent. Infrastructure and transport took the third spot, with 26 per cent of the respondents citing it as a concern.

Unemployment was however cited as one of the biggest concerns by almost half of the countries (15 countries) sampled, with citizens of countries such as Cape Verde citing it as their top most concern at 72 per cent followed by South Africa at 71 per cent and Namibia at 62 per cent.

Other countries that cited insecurity as a major concern included Madagascar at 36 per cent, Mauritius at 44 per cent, Tunisia at 43 per cent, Cape Verde 38 per cent and South Africa 27 per cent.

Though unemployment was cited as the top concern by almost half of the countries surveyed, the study pointed out that education and health were cited as sectors that governments need to prioritise when it comes to funding.

"On average across the 32 countries, education and healthcare are by far the highest priorities. More than half of respondents cite education as either their first (36 per cent) or second (18 per cent) priority, and half list healthcare first (21 per cent) or second (29 per cent)," the survey said.

Kenyans cited education as a top investment priority for the Government at 24 per cent with security coming in second at 18 per cent despite it being cited as the top most concern.

Healthcare, infrastructure and agricultural development took the third position of what Kenyans think the Government should prioritise on at 11 per cent for each sector. The emphasis on which sector the government should prioritise varied on the age, education and location (whether from an urban or rural area) of the respondents.

"Youths of ages 18 to 25 years place much more emphasis on education (41 per cent) than the oldest respondents (age 66+) at 27 per cent. The latter place higher priority on investment in agriculture and healthcare," the study reads.