Listing the 10 laziest countries in Africa, as well as defining the laziest country generally could be a tricky job. Not only that a potential researcher finds numerous of misinterpretations in defining of the term “lazy country,” but it also could hurt feelings and dignity of people in particular country. In lack of proper definition, researchers have used different methodologies which are not always useful or, in some cases, do not respect people’s decency.
So, we’ll start with the Lancet‘s study where scientists calculated the number of inactive people in countries worldwide, according to surveys and medical data on fat and obese people. Although this reputable website used these numbers to show a global problem with growing diseases that are usually a consequence of inactivity, we are not sure if those data show the real state of things.
Other websites, like CollegeCandy, used very interesting data retrieved from mobile phones and special application which counts a number of mobile owner’s steps during the day. So according to those parameters, we can say that Indonesia is the laziest country in the world for 2017, with an average of 3,513 steps daily per capita. Unfortunately, many countries in the world, including Africans, are very poor and their citizens do not use mobile phones at all! So, how can we claim that they are lazy if we cannot use the same methodology on them?
Nevertheless, the site VenasNews approached this topic more seriously. They listed top hard working countries in Africa by using a combination of different information they had about particular countries. According to information they had about the culture, behaving in crisis, countries development through the history and number of countrymen in developed countries like US and Canada, they made a list of hard working and laziest countries in Africa. They even included the time when people in those countries wake up and go to sleep. It is similar to the methodology we used for our list of 13 laziest countries in the world so that you can compare with data in that article, too. So, in case you ever wondered what is the laziest country in Europe, for example, just check out the list.
Websites AfricaCheck and SundayStandard, however, were inadmissibly disrespectful when making the laziest countries list according to their reputation for poor work ethic and interest in the business. They combined information published in history books about African countries behavior during colonialism, and national productivity calculated by working hours of citizens in African countries. Botswana was named as first on the list of laziest countries in Africa thanks to that methodology.
Even though this list is not precise and does not rely on reliable data (the great number of people in Africa is unemployed, while poverty and Africa’s education crisis are everlasting issues), they can be used for a global calculations, like in our list of 15 hardest working countries in the world ranked by average working hours. The citizens of those countries certainly aren’t laziest workers in the world. But, for today’s list, we also used one of the most reliable resources — Guardian‘s article based on already mentioned Lancet’s study on physical inactivity around the world. They calculated the percent of the people in every country who are not active (meaning less than 5×30 minutes of physical activity per day) where the lowest numbers are obviously the best. So, if you are wondering what are the top 50 laziest countries in the world, there’s your answer. The same goes for most active countries. Nevertheless, in order to get the best results, we combined this study with lists and surveys mentioned above. What we come up with is Insider Monkey’s genuine list of laziest countries in Africa:
Although this country is declared as a hard-working country in some of the sources we listed above, Nigeria ended up on our list. It seems that approximately 30% of the population is inactive. However, according to VenasNews Nigerians are the most aggressive people when it comes to business. Moreover, this is one of Africa’s nations with the most countrymen and women in US and Canada. Apparently, “most of Nigerians are entrepreneurs by nature.”
Like Nigeria, Kenya is also appointed as one of the hard-working countries, but it also occupies a low position on the list of inactive people – only 16.5% are inactive. Nevertheless, they are described as the brightest people among Africans who never give up even in hardest circumstances. They survived many years of starving and crisis, winning even in hardest situations. As the matter of fact, the main reason for their poorness and slow development are corruption and ethnic divisions.
Website VenasNews puts Zimbabwe in the middle of the list of hard working countries, but 23.8% of inactive people show that they are not as hardworking as first impression shows. Unfortunately, politics and a bad economy are the reasons for low employment rate (according to some sites only 11% are employed in formal section). That’s why we cannot just say that they are lazy. Describing them as the victims of bad politic and corruption is closer to the truth.
We all remember this country, a symbol of the poorness, hunger and starving children in the past. Although some surveys put Ethiopia on the list of hard working countries, other numbers, like a low number of literate and employed people and the bad economy indicate that this country is among the laziest ones. On the list of inactive people, they are in the middle, with 19.3%. Nobody denies their struggle to improve the situation in the country, but as if they have lack of flightiness and will to really change something.
All we know about Guinea and their nation allows us to put this country in the middle of the list. It has an average number of unemployed people for African countries – around 7%, and also an average number of inactive people – 12.1%. If we take these numbers in mind, we can say that Guinea should be on the list of hard working countries, but VenasNews had taken working habits and culture of those people into account and described them as lazy. Time will show who is right here, as in the past few years the country’s economic growth is evident, mostly thanks to the tourism.
Let’s see the top five laziest countries in Africa, shall we?
5. Cape Verde
From this country, things become serious on our list of laziest countries in Africa. Besides being described as lazy on VenasNews, this country also has more than 20% of inactive people. The number of unemployed people goes over 15%, and they have a low number of literate people, as well. Even though we know this country mostly to white sand beaches and turquoise sea; pirates, political turmoil, and economy crisis led to emigration and poorness. It is amazing how this country, known to great touristic potential, still has a problem with uneducated and unemployed people.
4. South Africa
There are many parameters that prove laziness of South Africans. First of all, they are in the middle of the list of laziest nations in the world according to a number of steps they make daily. As they calculated, every South Africa’s citizen makes only 4,105 steps during the day! If this number is not persuasive enough, let’s say that even 52.4% of them are inactive according to Guardian’s list. However, let’s not be that strict about South Africans since VenasNews puts them on the list of the hard working nation, but on very low position, almost close to the list of lazy ones.
Are you ready for the top three laziest countries in Africa?
We all remember movie Congo about rare blue diamante, and surely everybody saw photos of this amazingly green country with gorillas and big volcanoes. However, according to the survey, people in Congo are not into hard work and physical activity as even 48.6% of them are physically inactive. But, do not be so strict about their willingness to work, as they still have problems with natural catastrophes and bad politics. Their gorillas are famous all over the world which could be a good field to invest.
When it comes to Swaziland, numbers talk for themselves. Even 25% of their people are officially unemployment, while Guardian puts them in the first place on the list of inactive people with even 69% of people who are not active during the week! It is hard to explain why those numbers are so high, as well as what is the reason for their laziness, but in their defense, those numbers decreased in the last few years, so we expect that they will change themselves in the future. If nothing, they have developed tourism in past few years, welcoming people from all over the world to safari.
This country is named as laziest, but not according to a clearly defined methodology, but mostly because of their potential investors. According to them and following official surveys’ records, this country is among the worst in laziness, cooperation, and work ethic. Although those problems are identified in 90’s, none of the steps that government and economists planned and taken weren’t fruitful. As the Minister of Finance and Development Planning, Kenneth Matambo sadly concluded, people in Botswana have not improved the level of labor productivity by now.
This wraps it up for our list of laziest countries in Africa.