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February 18, 2018

500 families left homeless as floods wreak havoc in Thika

Kiganjo residents salvaging their properties from their flooded houses on Sunday.
Kiganjo residents salvaging their properties from their flooded houses on Sunday.

Three days of torential rains have swept away houses and other propety in Thika town leaving about 500 slum families homeless.

Roads in Kiganjo, Makongeni, landless, Kamenu and Kisii estates have becomeimpassable.

Semi-permanent houses in Kiandutu and Gacagi slums were washed away.

Lifestock also died.

One farmer in a landless estate said he lost mearly 500 hens.

Residents accused the county government of laxity and lack of preparation, despite warnings from the metrological department.

“The drainage system was blocked. That’s why there are flash floods. The county failed to avert the disaster, despite having the machinery and workforce,” resident Lawrence Kibicho said.

Residents said they fear an outbreak of cholera and other waterborne diseases.

Floods have overwhelmed the raw sewage lines and waste is even flowing into flooded homes.

“It’s just a matter of time. If something is not done to rectify this menace, residents will start contracting ailments from the water,” Eunice Kavulu said.

Residents said developers’ projects have also inteferred with the drainage system.

They appealed to the county’s Disaster Management department to come to their rescue.

They requested to be moved to higher, safer ground because they fear death.

MP Patrick Wainaina promised to come up with a permanent solution to end flooding.

He suggested a water harvesting programme that could be used for irrigating crops in areas like Gatuanyaga and Ngoliba.

“I also urge the county government, since, they have a disaster management kitty, to assist the families who have been badly affected by the floods,” Wainaina said.

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