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15 Bodies Recovered in West Pokot Landslide Tragedy

The multi-agency team conducting the rescue and recovery mission Tuesday recovered three more bodies bringing to 15 the bodies so far recovered following the Chesogon mudslide tragedy which occurred Saturday along the ElgeyoMarakwet-West Pokot border.
The Rift Valley regional commissioner George Natembeya who is leading the team said that they recovered the body of a woman, a foetus and some body parts saying they were still searching for the body of the mother to the foetus.
Addressing the press in the area, the RC said the Kenya Defence Forces and the Kenya Red Cross had joined in the search for the 20 people who are still missing.

Rift Valley regional commissioner George Natembeya accompanied by security personnel wades through the waters as he led the search and rescue mission of victims of the Saturday mudslide along the ElgeyoMarakwet-West Pokot border.

The RC said due to the state of the bodies, a DNA will have to be conducted to identify them before they are released to their relatives for burial.
However, Natembeya said the team was studying the situation to see if there was any hope of finding more bodies so that they can make a final determination to call off the search mission by today (Wednesday).
The adminstrator said the rescue mission was quite a tough exercise due to the raging waters with the rains still pounding the area and the huge boulders which were swept down by the mudslide.
“For instance one of the bodies we recovered had been swept 20 km downstream by the raging waters,” said Natembeya who had to spent the night in the area coordinating the exercise.
He expressed his appreciation to the locals whom he said had accorded his team a lot of support in the recovery and rescue mission since it began on Sunday.
Natembeya said he had received reports that the fourth year Moi university student who was rescued yesterday after staying in the water for two days was recovering at the Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital Eldoret.
He said the food and non food stuff from the government had already arrived and distribution would begin immediately.
The RC however said those distributing the food will strictly vet the beneficiaries to ensure that only victims of the mudslide get the assistance.
By Alice Wanjiru

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