A survey by the Kenya Bureau of Statistics reveals that 13.4% of Kenyans are out of work due to temporary layoffs or work reductions. The layoffs are one of the many adverse effects of the pandemic as Kenyans suffer through higher costs of commute and lack of finances, with 30.5% of households unable to pay their rent on time.
The survey further reveals that 43% of the participants were outside the labor force for the past seven days. Among those out of work, 49% were absent because of the lockout.
The report further shows that 9 out of ten Kenyans absent from work due to the lockout are not sure when to return. 1.2% expect to go back to work within the month, while 3.9% think they will return to work within 3 months.
Beyond employment, Kenyans face high costs of living, especially in commute. The country experiences a 51% increase in travel costs, with fares in Kitui and Migori hiking by 77%. As a result, 32% of Kenyans walk to work while 24% take matatus.
The housing status of some Kenyans is now on the line as the pandemic continues to affect income and employment. 21% of those who usually pay rent on time could not afford the rent for April. 52.9% of them cite lower income as the reason behind forfeiting rent.
Reduced income accounts for the main reason behind failure to pay rent, affecting 52.9% of Kenyans. Others attribute the failure to temporary loss of work, unemployment, and delay in income at 22%, 13.9%, and 9.1%, respectively.
Only 8.7% of households received waivers from their landlords.