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Curb deaths from floods

Thursday October 24 2019

EDITORIAL
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With the toll from the floods ravaging the country having risen from five to nearly 20 deaths in recent days, there is a cause for alarm.

This is more so because the Meteorological Department has warned in its forecast that the worst is yet to come.

The rains are expected to intensify, peaking next month, and there will definitely be more death and destruction.

More than 20,000 households have been displaced and the damage to roads, homes and other facilities in the most affected areas will require huge resources to repair.

18 DEATHS CONFIRMED

The Kenya Red Cross Society has confirmed 18 deaths — four each in Elgeyo-Marakwet, Kitui, Meru and Turkana counties and two in Wajir.

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It commendable, however, that the weatherman has continued to warn about the downpours with sections of some key highways washed away, cutting off food and other supplies to some regions, especially in the north of the country.

Devolution Cabinet Secretary Eugene Wamalwa has given an assurance about the measures the government is taking to mitigate the consequences.

The irony is that, whereas the opening of the skies should have been a blessing, as some areas had been gripped by long periods of drought, it has, instead, brought about doom and gloom.

SEVERE DROUGHTS

The apparent helplessness speaks volumes about the country’s poor disaster preparedness.

And it’s even worse as the Met had provided accurate forecasts long before the short rainy season set in.

The biggest paradox is that there are enough policies and blueprints on how to break the grip of severe droughts, which then gives way to the flooding menace.

It is, for instance, not impossible to build dams countrywide to trap the water that just flows to waste, leaving behind death and destruction.

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