MULTIPLE DISASTERS

250,000 need food, shelter due to floods, virus - MCAs

Too much scheming and politics can cause leaders to lose focus on humanitarian needs

In Summary

• Floods and mudslides destroyed hundreds of homes in West Pokot, Elgeyo Marakwet, Baringo and Nandi where many families are still living in camps as region fights spread of the coronavirus.

• MCAs want leaders and the government to shun politics and hel needy families.

Safaricom Foundation chairman Joseph Ogutu hands over PPE donations to Uasin Gishu Deputy Governor Daniel Chemno in Eldoret on May 19.
SAFARICOM Safaricom Foundation chairman Joseph Ogutu hands over PPE donations to Uasin Gishu Deputy Governor Daniel Chemno in Eldoret on May 19.
Image: MATHEWS NDANYI

More than 250,000 people in the North Rift require food and shelter after being displaced by mudslides and suffering the economic effects of the coronavirus crisis.

MCAs led by Kipruto Kimosop from Baringo are asking the government and leaders to focus on helping the needy families and fighting Covid-19 instead of politicking.

The floods and mudslides destroyed hundreds of homes in West Pokot, Elgeyo Marakwet, Baringo and Nandi where many families are still living in camps.

Kimosop said too much politics may cause the government to lose focus and abandon victims.

“With all these calamities along with Covid-19, this is the time to focus on helping people and not concentrate on too much politics and scheming for 2022," he said.

The MCAs from the region met in Eldoret where they expressed alarm over the plight of flood victims and those suffering income losses due to Covid-19. They included West Pokot Deputy speaker Francis Kirop, his Elgeyo Marakwet counterpart Christopher Kimosong, Pokot MCA Robert Komoloi and MCA Gilbert Tenai from Uasin Gishu.

Also present was Kipkurui Chepkwony, secretary general of the County Assemblies Forum.

They said Kenyans expect the government to mobilise resources instead of tolerating unnecessary power struggles.

Kimosop said hospitals and other public facilities have been submerged by lake flooding and nearby residents require urgent help.

The Safaricom Foundation, in partnership with a local NGO known as SPEAK and Uasin Gishu county, have donated Sh1 million Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to Covid-19 healthcare workers.

The supplies and PPEs, including coats, hand sanitiser, eye protectors, medical masks and gloves, will be distributed to the Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital and six other facilities.

“We must guarantee the safety of our healthcare workers by ensuring they are adequately protected so they can continue to tackle this pandemic from the frontline,” Joseph Ogutu, chairman of the  Safaricom Foundation, said.

Through the partnership, hand sanitiser will also be distributed to World Bank and Municipal markets and six bus stops.

Safaricom has also donated Sh200 million through the Safaricom and M-Pesa foundations to provide cash transfers for food to the needy. It has also donated Sh10 million thermal cameras to the Health ministry for installation at border entry points.

(Edited by V. Graham)