Kenya: Landslide Update - 29 People Dead, Several Missing

The rains have destroyed a huge section of the Kitale-Lodwar road.
23 November 2019

Nairobi — The death toll in the West Pokot landslide tragedy rose to 29, with several people reported missing.

A government statement issued by Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiangi said the tragedy affected two regions.

"We are saddened to confirm that 12 people from Tapach and Parua in Pokot South, and 17 from Tamkal in Pokot Central lost their lives," Matiangi said in a statement.

Matiangi said search and recovery efforts were underway led by Rift Valley Regional Security Committee with the help of government and humanitarian agencies led by the Kenya Red Cross.

"The government has deployed military and police choppers to scale up responses and respond to immediate needs of affected families while rescue and recovery efforts remain a priority," he said.

West Pokot Governor John Lonyangapuo described the incident as a major tragedy, and urged residents in the affected area to relocate.

"The way things are at the moment, we can only issue a warning to our residents and those in neighbouring counties, to tell them that we cannot predict how this situation will play out especially those in the hilly areas should be advised to self-evacuate to safer grounds until the rains subside," he said.

West Pokot County Commissioner Appolo Okello said the recovery efforts were hampered by rains.

"The challenge we are having is the heavy rains but we are determined to do our best in the search and rescue," he said.

Two children had been rescued and rushed to hospital.

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