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Gov’t will act to secure Kenyans, Ruto pledges as he mourns flood victims

33 counties are adversely affected

Kenyans living in low- lying and land-slide prone areas to move to safe grounds

President William Ruto has condoled with the families who have lost their loved ones to the devastating floods triggered by the ongoing Elnino rains.

In a statement on X, Ruto assured that the government will do everything in its power to secure Kenyans.

The ongoing heavy rains and flooding – which are linked to the El Niño weather phenomenon – have killed at least 71 people and displaced more than 150,000 in Kenya, according to the Kenya Red Cross.

“We condole with the families of the victims of the ongoing intense downpour and flooding in some parts of the country. We are pained by the loss of lives in Kwale, Mombasa, Samburu and, lately, Makueni County among other places. The Government will act to secure Kenyans” the President said.

Displaced families in Garsen (Kenya Red Cross)

The President’s message of condolence follows the death of seven people who were swept away by a flooded river river Muuoni in Mukaa area of Makueni county in Makueni county.

The group was returning to their homes after meeting First Lady Rachel Ruto in Nairobi.

On reaching Kavuthu Township, the group attempted to cross the flooded river at around 10pm, despite warnings that the river was swollen following heavy rains that had pounded the area for several hours.

They initially tried to hold onto a log that was floating on the river but unfortunately, they were overwhelmed by the raging floodwaters which swept them away as a crowd watched helplessly, according to Kavuthu location chief, Norman Musyoki.

The accident forced the other members of the team to spend the night at Kavuthu township. Rescue efforts are still ongoing with only three bodies retrieved so far.

33 counties are grappling with flash floods with the rains are expected to continue in the month of December and the first Quarter of 2024.

Some of the worst affected counties include Mombasa, Garissa, Tana River, Makueni, Marsabit, Kilifi, Kwale, Meru, Isiolo, Turkana, Samburu, Wajir, Homa Bay, and Busia.

Those living in low- lying and land-slide-prone areas to move to safe grounds even as the government enhances response mechanisms to mitigate the negative impact of El Nino.