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'Cyclonic activities' increase risk in flying along coastline

Monday December 9 2019

Mombasa rains

Motorists are pictured on the Makupa causeway at Makande on November 12, 2019 following heavy rains in Mombasa County and its environs. PHOTO | LABAN WALLOGA | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

SIAGO CECE
By SIAGO CECE
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LUCY MKANYIKA
By LUCY MKANYIKA
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The weatherman has issued a warning over flying along the coastline as heavy rains continue to pound several parts of the country.

For the next three days, Mombasa and other coastal counties will experience heavy rainfall accompanied by thunderstorms.

Mr Edward Ngure, Mombasa's Director of Meteorology, told the Nation of cyclonic activities reducing pressure in the India Ocean, with most clouds moving towards the cyclone.

"Heavy rains will be accompanied by strong winds offshore, which may which may result in a storm surge in the ocean," said Mr Ngure.

AREAS AFFECTED

According to a weather update issued on Monday, the region will receive rains in the morning throughout the week, with sunny intervals and thunderstorms.

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In Mombasa, areas expected to be affected are Nyali, Kisauni, Shanzu, Likoni, Mvita, Changamwe and Jomvu.

"[The rains are] going to affect areas in the entire coastline from Lamu to Kwame. The situation gets worse as you move south towards Madagascar," Mr Ngure said.

The weatherman also warned of flash floods in low lying areas and those with poor drainage systems, as well as in areas with unfilled quarries. He issued alerts to residents of Galana and Tana River.

Fishermen and beach goers were also warned about strong winds.

HOMELESS

By Monday morning, most parts of Mombasa were experiencing continuous rainfall accompanied by thunderstorms.

In Taita Taveta, the county government said it will support victims of rain-related calamities by relocating them to safer ground and reconstructing their houses.

More than 200 families have been left homeless by heavy rains that destroyed their houses.

Some of the families are camping at Voi Primary School as the government and well-wishers look into resettling them.

Governor Granton Samboja said the county will pay for the relocation but asked for help from the national government.

"As we continue to assess, my government will support affected families by relocating and reconstructing their homes," he said in Rong'e, without revealing whether funds had been set aside.

DAMAGE

Voi and Wundanyi sub-counties are most affected, with three deaths reported so far.

In Wundanyi, 41 houses have been destroyed by mudslides and roads rendered impassable. 

Well-wishers have provided the families with shelter amid calls by the government for the people to move to safer areas.

Leaders led by Mr Samboja and Wundanyi MP Danson Mwashako urged the national government to disburse funds to mitigate the damages.

"We need help fixing our roads because some of them are totally impassable," the governor said.

Public service operators are up in arms over the poor state of the roads while farmers say they cannot transport their produce to markets.

IMPOSTERS

Meanwhile, more than 120 people were expelled from the Voi camp after it was established that they were not flood victims.

Jaram Oranga, the county's coordinator of the Kenya Red Cross Society, said some people were taking advantage of the situation to get free food and shelter.

"We conducted investigations and realised they were not genuine flood victims," he said.

Mr Oranga said only 185 people were camping at the school.

"We don't know when we will close the camp. It is the responsibility of the county government to resettle them," he said.