Kenya – Flood Death Toll Rises, 100,000 Displaced

Almost 200 people have now died in flooding in Kenya since April. Meanwhile the Turkwel Gorge and Masinga dams have filled to maximum capacity.

Floods in Busia County, Kenya in May 2020. Photo: Government of Kenya

In a statement on 06 May, the government in Kenya says at least 194 people have now died in flooding in the country in the last 3 weeks, while over 100,000 have been displaced.

Flooding has affected 29 of the country’s 47 counties. Wide areas of land are under water in Busia and Siaya counties, western Kenya, after the Nzoia river overflowed.

According to government figures, around 30 people have died in flooding in the last 2 days. Earlier this week Government Minister Eugene Wamalwa said the number of fatalities stood at 164.

Yesterday the Minister said “More than 600,000 Kenyans in 122,000 households have been adversely affected by the effects of the ongoing heavy rains, which are expected to continue up to June.”

He added “It is unfortunate that the floods and landslides are being experienced at a time when the country is grappling with the COVID -19 .All floods affected persons in various camps will be issued with face masks while clean water will be provided through water bowsers”

Aircraft have been deployed for aerial surveillance of flooded areas to locate individuals and communities marooned or cut-off due to the raging floods.

Twenty-five temporary camps have been established across the country to accommodate the displaced persons due to flood related issues.Authorities are ensuring a continuous supply of portable water to affected communities, as well as delivery of medical supplies and other non-food items by the emergency medical teams.

The government said that Turkwel Gorge dam and Masinga dam have filled to maximum capacity which has never been recorded in history. The overflow water will affect residents along the Tana River in Garissa and Tana River Counties. Residents in these areas should move to safer grounds, and those who refuse will be evicted.

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