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Kisumu floods victims get donations from well-wishers

Tuesday December 10 2019
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Mr Yogi Dawda, one of the coordinators of Kisumu Community Flood Mitigation Team addresses journalists at Kenyatta Sports Ground on December 10, 2019. On the left is Kisumu County Special Programmes Director Ruth Odinga. PHOTO | TONNY OMONDI | NATION MEDIA GROUP

By VICTOR RABALLA
By GEORGE ODIWUOR
By DICKENS WASONGA

Kisumu residents and the county government have now come together to assist flood victims as the number of those affected rose to over 10,000.

The Kisumu Community Flood Mitigation Team has set up a tent at Jomo Kenyatta Sports Ground where well-wishers have been encouraged to donate funds, foodstuffs and other items.

All the seven sub-counties of Kisumu have been affected, Director of Special Projects Ruth Odinga said, adding that Nyando and Muhoroni residents have been worst hit.

LOSSES

“With the ongoing rains, we fear that the number could further increase. We therefore rely on these contributions to supplement the county and the national government’s efforts to avert further loss of lives and damage to property,” she said while launching the programme on Tuesday.

The team will also open a joint bank account where the funds will be channelled before assisting people from various areas within the county.

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“As a matter of urgency, we will distribute the donations we have already received to the locals of Ombaka in Nyando Sub-County and those in Achuodho in the neighbouring Muhoroni who have since been displaced by the raging floods,” she said.

The initiative which started on Monday has already raised over Sh500,000 and a truck of maize flour among other donations.

COOKING GAS

The team’s coordinator, Mr Paul Omanga, also appealed for cooking gas and medical assistance.

“Exposure to cold and the poor sanitary conditions continues to endanger the lives of people affected by the raging river waters,” said Mr Omanga.

The contributions will go a long way to assist the victims during and after the floods, he noted.

In Homa Bay, the county government has aside Sh2 million to support families affected by floods as it makes plans to decongest camping sites.

Governor Cyprian Awiti announced that his government will use the funds to help over 2,500 people displaced by floods in various parts of the county.

At least 451 households from Ndhiwa, Rachuonyo North and Mbita are affected.

DISPLACEMENT CAMPS

Speaking at a disaster meeting with County Commissioner Harman Shambi and his Deputy Hamilton Orata Monday, the governor said the funds will be used for buying food and other items to help the floods victims.

Most of the affected people are camping at Osodo Primary School in Rachuonyo North.

The governor said the county Health department will also provide drugs to the victims.

“The Health department has made arrangements to help the victims with drugs to cushion them from diseases in the camps,” he said.

He urged residents living in flood-prone areas to relocate to higher grounds to prevent loss of lives and damage to property.

Mr Shambi said the national government has also distributed food and none food items to the affected families.

He said plans have been made to decongest the camps which are now crowded.

He said some of the families camping at Osodo Primary School will be moved to Kobal and Kobuya primary schools.

CREATE MORE SPACE

“We are going to create more space in the camps to minimise spread of diseases. We have realised the camp at Osodo is already congested,” he said.

Three people have so far been killed by floods in Homa Bay.

The floods happened after rivers Miriu and Kuja which burst their banks.

Meanwhile, some residents of Ndhiwa have decried the destruction of their crops by floods.

The residents now fear that this might lead to a severe famine.

“Some crops were eroded while others have already been destroyed due to water logging. We expected good harvests this season but we have lost hope,” said Mr Jarongo Okumu.

In Siaya, farmers are counting losses after heavy rains destroyed crops in parts of the county over the last one week.

More than 50 acres of horticultural crops were destroyed at Urima and Ulowa villages in Got-Agulu Sub-Location.

Speaking to the Nation on Tuesday, farmers said they have suffered huge losses and that they will have to begin from the scratch.

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