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Floods: Ruto sets up Disaster Operation Centre, Cabinet to meet Monday

The President chaired a disaster response meeting at State House bringing together various stakeholders

President William Ruto has convened an emergency cabinet meeting this Monday to deliberate on the flood situation in the country.

The President who Saturday chaired a disaster response meeting at State House bringing together various stakeholders regretted that the El Nino rains had caused devastation and loss of lives across the country.

Channel 1

With the weatherman warning that the rains will not subside anytime soon, Ruto announced an emergency response plan aimed at mobilising resources to restore damaged key roads and ensure delivery of supplies including medicines, food, and fuel to areas where transport has been cut off by the raging floods.

Northern Kenya is one of the region’s worst-hit with trucks loaded with food, medicine and fuel supplies unable to access destinations.

“ The rains have resulted in an emergency situation in Kenya. Cabinet will meet on Monday to deliberate on various recommendations to make ensure the country is better prepared for the management situate that we see unfolding” the President announced in a meeting with multi-agency teams involved in assessing, managing, and providing leadership on the current rain situation in the country.

Consequently, a National Disaster Operation Center has been set up to coordinate all responses and make sure adequate emergency interventions are in place.

The floods have claimed 70 lives and displaced thousands.

“Unfortunately we have lost 70 people across the country and 36,160 households displaced so far. MET says rains will continue so we need to prepare ourselves for the emergencies that will ensue” the President said.

The Kenya Defense Forces have been ordered to airlift supplies in concerted efforts to mitigate the worsening situation.

“Ksh2.4B has been made available to buy food. Adequate resources will be required and we mobilise necessary resources to restore damaged roads, deliver medicines, and ensure we deliver fuel. I have instructed KDF to provide air services, We have mobilised NYS and all road contractors to provide emergency interventions” Ruto added.

Additionally, Treasury has been mandated to explore different mechanisms of funding for required resources and should present recommendations on Monday when Cabinet meets.

With the Kenya Meteorological Department issuing a grim forecast for the coming days and months and spilling dams, the President assured Kenyans that his administration is well prepared to handle the crisis.

He however warned those living in low-lying areas to move to avert further devastation.

“We are informed that within the next one week, our dams will be filled…Kenya is already soaked and water will be flowing everywhere, therefore we run a higher risk of flooding in different parts of Kenya I want to assure the Country we are appropriately seized of the matter and better prepared for the future” he assured.

Areas of particular concern include Mandera, Garissa, Wajir, and Tana River and parts of the upper eastern areas of Kenya.

Emergency measures announced:

  • Adequate interventions are being put in place to ensure relief supplies are available to the victims of floods countrywide.
  • Alternative routes will be provided to the roads that have been washed away to ensure delivery of supplies to areas that have been cut off by the floods.
  • KDF will airlift commodities to different parts of the country marooned by floods.
  • NYS will also be mobilised to provide emergency intervention.
  • The Ministry of Health and the Red Cross will provide medicine and water treatment that are required.
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