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Devolution Ministry in fact finding mission on families affected by rains

The  government has since April to date spent Sh.1.3 billion to support families affected by numerous disasters occasioned by heavy rains.

The  Devolution Cabinet Secretary (CS), Eugene Wamalwa has said since onset of long rains, about 800, 000 people have been affected either by landslides or floods caused by heavy downpour, experienced in several parts of the country.

Speaking when he visited Murang’a County on Monday, Wamalwa said part of the money was used in purchasing food and other essential items for families who lost their property due the floods.

The CS noted that the most affected counties include Murang’a, Elgeyo Markwet, West Pokot, Baringo, Tana River and some parts of western region of Kenya.

Wamalwa said that his ministry has deployed teams to assess the destruction caused by ongoing rains saying more funds will be used to support the affected.

“The rains are still going on and from information from weatherman it’s likely they will continue pounding parts of the country till June,” he said.

“In some parts like West Pokot, we were forced to put up some houses after their homes were badly hit by landslides,” added Wamalwa.

The CS  was on a fact finding mission on the rate of destruction caused by landslides which have affected several parts of Murang’a county.

Accompanied by several legislators from the county, he flagged off 1, 000 bags of rice to support victims of floods and landslides in the region, where 253 households with family members totaling to 1, 194 had their homes and farms destroyed.

In Kariara area of Gatanga sub county, a family lost its two-acre piece of land to landslide as other eight families were left counting losses after their tea bushes were destroyed.

The landslides also affected several roads especially in Kigumo, Kandara, Kangema and Mathioya sub counties paralyzing transport.

A road connecting Murang’a and Nyeri counties which cuts across Kandara, Kahuro, Kangema and Mathioya sub counties was badly affected, while two sections one in Kandara and another in Mathioya sunk due to heavy rains.

Wamalwa said the government is working out on how to repair affected roads and normalize transport.

Local  legislators who accompanied the CS included, Mary Waithera (Maragua), Ruth Mwaniki (Kigumo), Joseph Nduati (Gatanga), Peter Kimari (Mathioya), Kigano Muturi (Kangema) and the county woman representative Sabina Chege.

Lauding the government for urgent response to victims of landslides, Chege said some families from Kahatia area have been living with their relatives after their homes were completely destroyed by landslides.

“We appeal to national government to get alternative land for some of the hardest hit families, whose homesteads were reduced to gullies and no new houses can be constructed there,” said the women representative.

She called upon residents to avoid crossing swollen rivers saying more than 200 people countrywide have lost their lives after they attempted to do so.

By  Bernard  Munyao

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