Skies rain more misery on Kenyans

Floods reach formerly untouched areas of Kuria as they leave trail of death and destruction in their wake

Wangui Githugo, Mathew Ndung’u and Tom Rachuonyo

Floods continue to wreak havoc around the country, leaving a trail of destruction and homeless families.

In Ngoingwa estate, Thika, more than 30 families are counting losses after they were displaced by flash floods.

According to Esther Mburu, a victim, many families had to move children and valuables to safety on Saturday night after flood waters that carried with them snakes started filling up their houses.

She said most families around Ngoingwa’s 7th Avenue spent the night scouring out water that was flowing into their houses.

“The heavy rainfall that has continued to pound the country for the last few days has left our homes marooned and inaccessible and we are experiencing massive difficulties. We are now afraid our children might contract water-borne diseases, pneumonia or even malaria,” she said.

The residents blamed poor drainage and called on Kiambu county government to come to their rescue.

“We are appealing to the county and MP Patrick Wainaina to send experts who can address this drainage problem once and for all,” pleaded Mwangi Karanja, another affected resident.

At the same time, Wiper Democratic Movement leader Kalonzo Musyoka attributed the deadly effects of floods on failure to conserve the environment.

He said the calamities being witnessed throughout the country could be avoided if relevant agencies became prudent with environment management.

Future problems

Corruption, he added, has been a major hindrance towards conservation saying individuals were being allowed to invade water catchment areas and construct on water-ways with some even diverting the waters to other areas.

Speaking in Gilgil on Saturday, Kalonzo said if serious steps are not taken to prevent environmental degradation, then major lakes including the world-famous flamingo Lake Nakuru will be no more.

“The money being used now for relocation could have been used for environmental conservation, if nothing is done then we will stand to suffer dangers of more floods or even lakes drying up,” he added.

And in a rare occurrence, the Kuria community experienced the pains of flooding for the first time in decades.

Hundreds of families were forced to spend nights in the cold after their homes were swept away by the floods.

The historic Memusi Peace market which was launched three years ago by Migori county government at the boarder of Bairege and Banyabasi clans to ease tension between the warring clans, was also swept away displacing close to 80 traders.

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