Unforgiving rivers return to reclaim grabbed pathways
Three riversThree rivers: River Molo, Rongai and Ndarugu in Nakuru County have reclaimed their original paths, sweeping through settlements and farms that had encroached on their routes. Last week, Molo experienced one of the most devastating flooding in more than a decade. This saw River Molo burst its banks, displacing scores of families and leaving a trail of destruction in its wake.
The river returned
SEE ALSO :18 dead in Indonesia floodsAfter the heavy rains last week, at least 200 families were displaced after River Rongai broke its banks. They ended up at a camp in Cesarina Secondary School. The river also swept through tomato farms dotting its banks. According to area Deputy County Commissioner Julius Kavita, the situation was aggravated by poor farming practices that saw farmers cultivating too close to the river. And when the rains came, the river demanded its right of way. “We urge those conducting any human activities within the riparian areas to keep off. Encroachment worsened the situation leading to acres of tomatoes being washed away. Such losses could have been avoided,” said Kavita. Rongai MP Raymond Moi warned residents against encroaching on river banks saying this was endangering lives. “There is nothing that one gains by moving too close to the river. These are people bringing problems to the government as those affected call for evacuation. The magnitude of the current crisis would not have been this devastating,” he said. At the beginning of December, River Ndarugu, which originates from Njoro, also burst its banks at the lower end of Kwa Rhonda slums threatening to submerge some of the houses in the area. One of the major bridges connecting the slum to Barut village was completely submerged. The water levels reached close to the perimeter walls of nearby homes causing panic among residents. “The danger is imminent. The houses are too close to the river. Sometimes it rains in Njoro and those downstream are not aware. When the floods hit the area people were asleep. Should the water levels rise people and property will be washed into lake,” said Joel Amboga, a resident. County National Environmental Management Authority director, Antony Saisi promised to respond on what his department is doing about the matter later.
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