Zimbabwe has been ranked as the fourth unhappiest country in the world, according to the latest World Happiness Report. The report ranks 137 nations according to factors such as gross domestic product per capita, social support, life expectancy, freedom to make one’s own life choices, generosity of the general population, and perceptions of corruption in society. Zimbabwe’s position at 134th is close to the bottom end of the rankings, with only Afghanistan, Lebanon, Sierra Leone, and the Democratic Republic of Congo ranking lower.
European countries dominated the top twenty positions, with Finland declared the happiest country in the world for the sixth consecutive year. Denmark, Iceland, Israel, and the Netherlands rounded out the top five for 2023. New Zealand ranked 10th, and Australia came in 12th. Non-European countries in the top twenty included Israel (fourth), New Zealand (tenth), Australia (12th), Canada (13th), and the United States (15th).
The report comes as Zimbabwe continues to struggle with political and economic turmoil. The current government has been criticized for corruption, and many Zimbabweans are struggling to make ends meet due to high inflation and unemployment rates. The country’s poor showing in the World Happiness Report reflects these challenges.
While the report suggests that Zimbabwe’s government lacks the legitimacy to address these issues, some are calling for change. Zimbabweans have been protesting against corruption and economic hardship in recent months, with some demanding that President Emmerson Mnangagwa step down. Mnangagwa has promised to tackle corruption, but his efforts have been met with skepticism by many Zimbabweans.
The World Happiness Report has been published for over ten years, coinciding with the adoption of International Day of Happiness by the United Nations General Assembly in 2012. The report aims to promote happiness as a fundamental human right and a key measure of social progress. However, Zimbabwe’s poor showing in the rankings suggests that there is still much work to be done to ensure that all citizens can lead happy and fulfilling lives