There was a scare in Kalolenyi village in Voi sub-county on Monday morning after twenty farmers were marooned in their farms for over six hours following heavy flooding that led to Voi River bursting her banks.
The water flooded their farms effectively cutting them off from the rest of the land.
A rapid response team by Red Cross was called to rescue the panicky farmers, who were stranded in their farms as water level rose alarmingly. After scouting for a safe route for evacuation, a rope-line was used to carefully lead the farmers to safety.
Joram Oranga, the Red Cross County Coordinator, said the farmers were unharmed but shaken.
He added that there was still a risk of more flooding and warned farmers against going back to the farms until it was considered safe.
“With the rains continuing, the farms by Voi River are still too risky. We urge the farmers not to go back until it is safe,” he said.
However, he added that most farmers alongside the river were fearful of losing their tomato crops and were reluctant to heed such warnings. He said the safety measures will also be enforced by government through the officers from Ministry of Interior and Coordination of National Government.
“We have alerted the office of the Deputy County Commissioner and we hope the warnings we have issued will be enforced to keep our farmers safe,” Oranga said.
Meanwhile, a suspected thief is feared to have drowned in Voi River after he jumped in the flooded river to escape the wrath of an angry mob that was pursuing him.
Sources say the middle-aged man was caught breaking into a house and fled as a mob pursued him. He jumped into the river and was rapidly washed away by the raging waters.
A source that declined to be named said no one dared to rescue him due to fear of drowning. “They watched as he was carried away. No one knows where he is,” he said.
However, authorities have refuted claims of such an incidence. Area Assistant Chief, Shaaban Nkurumah said the reports had not yet reached his office. He said they spent the better part of the day helping Red Cross to evacuate the marooned farmers.
“I have not received any such information and I left that area after everyone was evacuated,” he said. He however, promised to follow up and authenticate the claims.
By Wagema Mwangi