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Kenyans coping with “January blues”

Kenyans have been forced to dig deeper into their pockets to make ends meet as they transit from the holiday and festive season to building the nation in their various capacities.

Kenya News Agency took to the streets of Kiambu town to ask residents how they are managing their finances in the month of January which according to them has always been laden with heavy financial responsibility.

Peter Mwangi, a businessman and a father of two revealed that he is only spending his money on essential items and needs this month.

“As you know, there are many things to take care of in January and the biggest cost is school fees, once you have paid school fees, very little is left and you therefore have to cut down on things that are not essential such as weekend outings,” Mwangi said.

Jane Mukami who is also a parent, reading from the same script with Mwangi says that in this first month of the year, most people are running on very tight budgets, attributing it to the heavy spending of the Christmas festive season.

“As you know, during Christmas, we have to spend to give our children good experiences and something to look forward to and it is most times at the expense of the responsibilities of the following month of January,” she said.

Jared Guandaru, an accountant however says that the proverbial ‘January blues’ can be avoided with proper planning.

“If one can save certain amounts of money every month before December, they would have enough to enjoy the festivities and a sufficient amount to live comfortably in January,” Guandaru told KNA.

Guandaru also says it’s important to budget, arguing that it helps to cut wastage and allocate resources where they are most needed.

Many of those who spoke to KNA alluded to have found themselves in tight spots owing to the heavy spending of the festive season and the equally weighty financial obligations that are met in this month.

They include paying school fees, rent, medical bills and fare to-and-from their workplaces among other responsibilities that require financial commitment that cannot be avoided.

By Duncan Mutwiri

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