Kenyans have been introduced to so many terms in 2019 that Google, our trusted friend, had to always come to our rescue and help us understand what they mean. The terms arose from political events, local and international trends, and local slang. Here are the top 10 trending “What is” Google searches in 2019.
10. What is happening in Sudan
Kenyans seemed to be curious to know what was happening in Sudan this year. As many Google results showed, the country has been in the midst of a political crisis since Omar al-Bashir was overthrown in April.
The military and pro-democracy movement have been butting heads in a tussle for power that has seen mass protests and killings. Both parties have since come to an agreement with regards to power-sharing such as regular elections and the country’s government structure.
9. What is Aflatoxin
When you tell someone that their staple food or favourite peanut butter spread has high levels of aflatoxin, they will obviously look up the term on Google.
Aflatoxins are a family of toxins produced by fungi and are commonly found in peanuts. Consumption of high aflatoxin levels leads to an increased risk of liver cancer.
The Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) has made headlines this year by banning several Unga and peanut brands citing that they had higher levels of aflatoxin than recommended. Questions, however, came about from the public who wondered how KEBS allowed such products to be sold to the masses.
8. What is BBI
The term BBI has been used by politicians throughout the year so much that one would forget the fact that they don’t know what it means or its purpose.
The Building Bridges Initiative was formed by President Uhuru Kenyatta with a mandate that it consults citizens, leaders, institutions, civil society, the private sector, the religious sector, and other stakeholders to recommend solutions that he will share with relevant institutions and processes.
Over 7000 citizens from all 47 counties were consulted and a final report was handed to the President last month. Among the key suggestions included the return of the Prime Minister, cabinet members to be appointed from parliament, and leadership changes in the electoral commission.
7. What is the Population Census
According to the United Nations, a population census is the total process of collecting, compiling, and publishing demographic, economic, and social data pertaining to a specific time to all persons in a country or delimited part of a country.
Kenya recently had the census carried out in the month of August and the results were published in November. A total of 47,564,296 were enumerated in the process, an increase from 2009’s 38.6 million enumerated.
Men account for 23,548,056 of the population while women are marginally more in number with a population of 24,014,716.
6. What is Housing Census
If you think there is a difference between population census and housing census, you are mistaken. What you need to know is that the official term for the census held every 10 years in the country is the Kenya Population and Housing Census.
Of course, there are different types of the census but that is not important here.
5. What is INEOS
When Eliud Kipchoge said that he would finish a full marathon in under two hours, he had the support of INEOS, a chemical company owned by Jim Ratcliffe based in London, United Kingdom.
It was INEOS that funded the 1:59 challenge on that historic day that saw the world witness history. INEOS believes in supporting and challenging individuals, working with experts and creating brilliantly effective teams.
4. What is Cancer
As mentioned earlier, high consumption levels of aflatoxin can cause cancer. Kenyans were curious to find out what cancer actually is given that it has been used more than enough times in one year.
Cancer, in simple words, is the uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells in the body and develops when the body’s normal control mechanism stops working. Old cells don’t die and instead grow out of control forming new abnormal cells and create a mass of tissue (tumour).
Treatment options depend on the type of cancer, its stage if cancer has spread and your general health. The goal of treatment is to kill as many cancerous cells while reducing damage to normal cells nearby. The three main treatments are surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy.
3. What is Xenophobia
This search term came about from the two separate attacks that were witnessed in South Africa, Durban riots in March and Johannesburg riots in September. Locals were targetting businesses owned by foreign nationals that saw more than 50 businesses destroyed or damaged during the incidents.
While it is true that xenophobia can be likened to racism, it simply means dislike of or prejudices against people from other countries. The term doesn’t really point out active racism but simple dislike towards foreigners.
2. What is Huduma Number
The government announced earlier this year that Huduma Numbers would essentially act as the official government-issued document for identification and conduct of transactions. Kenyans made long queues to register for the new ID but things have been quiet ever since.
What made this card unique is that it also acted as a credit card courtesy of Mastercard and that a child that was 6 years of age could have one. The child would, however, need to return it once he/she attains the age of 18 years so as to get an Adult’s Huduma card.
The government had warned that those who may not register, will not receive any government services. The court ruling has since barred the government from discrimination of people.
1. What is Census
Refer to point #7.
Those are the trending questions that Kenyans searched on Google. What other questions did you find out on the search engine? Let us know in the comments.