Leader: Shame on state for failing W Pokot victims

Transport, personnel and relief should be able to reach anywhere at any time.

In Summary

• The state had advance warning of above-normal rains and flooding. What did it do?

• The West Pokot landslide calamity clearly demonstrates our inability to deal with disasters.

The rains countrywide have caused deaths and massive property destruction. Hundreds of people are displaced and in dire need of aid. The West Pokot landslide — that killed at least 53 people — is the worse tragedy so far.

It is disturbing hundreds of people, including women and children, are out in the cold; the aid response is hampered by bad weather.

Yesterday, officials led by Interior CS Fred Matiang'i had to fly back to Nairobi after their visitation aborted due to bad weather. Though the government has announced a major supply of food, blankets, mattresses, tents and clothing, reaching the victims is a major problem.

The government admits it doesn't know the exact number of people affected. It lacks proper statistics for the West Pokot tragedy and all the others.

This clearly demonstrates our inability to deal with disasters.

The government should explain what measures it put in place to deal with such calamities after the Met warned of above-normal rains and flooding.  Where was the due preparation?  

The government must do more to protect its people. It should not wait for deaths and displacement. It should have transport, personnel and relief that can reach anywhere at any time.