Huruma rescue mission called off

By Lynace Mwashigadi

The death toll of the Huruma collapsed building tragedy has risen to 51 after two hospitalized victims succumbed to injuries on Sunday.

28 people are reported missing and the search and rescue operations have now been scaled down and diverted to the nearby Nairobi River.

Rescuers drawn from the Kenya Red Cross, National Youth Service, Nairobi County Council and Kenya Defense Forces have been working round the clock buoyed by the hope of finding more survivors.

The searching through debris of the ill-fated 6 storey Huruma residential building resulted in the rescue of 14 people and 9 domestic animals. The national disaster management unit that was coordinating the mission says it has wound up operations at the site.

Designated Incident Commander Pius Masai confirmed that the death toll of the tragedy now stands at 51 after two more people succumbed to their injuries Sunday at the Kenyatta National Hospital.

Monica Akinyi lost seven family members and only survived because she arrived home late. A few metres away Mwikali is in agony. Hopes of finding her husband of five years alive are all but diminished.

Meanwhile in the wake of the tragedy that has once again cast the spotlight on substandard construction of residential buildings, the County government of Nairobi has given tenants of such houses in Huruma seven days to find alternative accommodation.

Close to 78 houses in the area have been ear-marked for demolition with 10 of the buildings already brought down.




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