More Kenyans see the US as the development partner of greatest benefit, compared especially to its main ‘competitor’, China (34% vs. 26%), despite the latter having established a much more visible ‘footprint’ in the country in terms of the major infrastructure projects it has financed, including especially the Standard Gauge Railway.
This shift from the findings of Ipsos’ previous (early March) survey is seen in the decline of support for China among both Jubilee government’s own supporters and among those of NASA. Among the former, positive identification of China has dropped from 44% then to just 30%, with almost as many (28%) now considering the US the country’s most important development partner. Among NASA supporters, such positive identification of China was 24% (as opposed to 32% for the US), whereas in this survey this gap has increased to 49% for the US vs. just 19% for China.
Regarding the main reasons for these ratings, even if the private US firm Bechtel had been identified as having won the contract to construct a new Mombasa-Nairobi dual carriageway, China rating for infrastructure is more than twice that of the US (86% vs. 38%). Yet for its part, support for the US in terms of grants/loans is more than four times that for China (49% vs. 11% - though again it should be noted that only one answer was allowed in this single response question).
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Q1 National SPEC Survey, 2018
State officials themselves, rather than errant/criminal elements within the wider society, are deemed responsible for most rights and constitutional violations. Support for devolution remains high, even if doubts continue to increase about the counties’ capacity to provide medical services on their own. China overtakes the US as the ‘most favored nation’ among Kenyans, even if its negative ratings stem almost entirely from its economic muscle – the very factor that has allowed it to become such a valued partner in Kenya’s development.
Kenyans Unwavering Support for the Handshake!
Majority of Kenyans (80%) still support the March 2018 handshake between President Uhuru Kenyatta and Rt. Hon. Raila Odinga; though this support is slightly lower in Central, Rift Valley and Western regions. The main reason for the support of the handshake is that it has brought about peace and unity in the (86%) and eased political tensions in the country.