31 December 2012

Kenya: Two Killed in Pokot Flash Floods

Two people have have killed after they were swept away by raging Wei Wei River in Marakwet. The river burst its banks and flushed through a village after a weekend of heavy rains.

Rift Valley police chief John Mbijiwe said a police helicopter has been helping in the search and recovery of the affected.

Meanwhile about 100 families within Kisumu county have been displaced by flush floods after River Nyando burst its banks flooding villages in the area following heavy downpour.

The most affected areas, according the statistics from the Kenya Red Cross Society, are Nyando, Nyakach and Muhoroni Districts.

Kenya Red Cross society statistics released on Saturday show that 40 families were evacuated from Osende village in North Eastern part of River Nyando after their homes were swept by the floods.

Kenya Red Cross assistant Secretary General in charge of Western Kenya region Emmanuel Owako said the families are now camping at Osende Primary School.

"Another group of 50 families were displaced from Ombeyi village in Muhoroni and evacuated to Ombeyi Primary school where they are camping," disclosed Owako.

In Lower Nyakach area, he revealed that three families were left homeless after their houses collapsed due to the heavy down pour.

He pointed out that a local church also collapsed due to the rains experienced in the area over the Weekend. He said River Nyando also burst its banks at Ahero bridge along Nairobi-Kisumu highway on Saturday night and flooded Ahero market spreading to nearby villages.

Transport was briefly paralyzed along the highway due to the raging floods in the area. Owako pointed out that the flush floods also affected Ayweyo village where it swept some homesteads and farms.

Affected villagers yesterday expressed fears of contracting waterborne diseases and appealed to the Kenya Red Cross and the ministry of Public health to keep an eye on them.

Political activist Onyango Koyoo said the ministry of Public health must move with speed to address the problem since majority of the latrines were submerged thus posing a major health risk.

He said in Muhoroni constituency, several roads have become impassable thus hindering sugarcane transportation to the local industries.

Owako revealed that they were aware of the dangers the families would be prone to since the floods also affected some latrines in the areas.

He pointed out that they will distribute various non-food relief items including; Mosquito nets, soap, water purifiers and blankets among other necessities to the affected families.

In April, ten people perished after flush floods swept away their homesteads in Nyaburu and Wiga villages in Suba, Homabay County.

Residents living on the flat ground at Nyaburu, Olando, Wiga, Lambwe and some parts of Ruma have now been urged to evacuate and move to higher grounds to avoid more losses.

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