Search still on for bodies of flood victims



Homa Bay County

Efforts to retrieve the remaining four bodies of children swept away by floods in Suba District last week have been thwarted as heavy downpour continues in the area.

Consequently, the Government, through the Special Programmes Ministry, has promised to send tractors to help the search team to retrieve the bodies.

Over the weekend, the search for the bodies of five missing children yielded one body as residents appealed to the Government to provide sniffer dogs to fast track the exercise.

Slow exercise

Suba Council of Elders Chairman Thomas Asongo said the exercise was slow due to mud and rains that continued pounding the area.

"We need food and the dogs to help us find the bodies. This is a serious thing. The bodies must be very deep under the soil," he said.

Special Programmes Assistant Minister Mohammed Ali, who visited the area, said the Government would send tractors to help in retrieving four bodies of children feared dead in Nyaboru village, Homa Bay County.

"The Government has adequate machinery and we shall ensure that the bodies are recovered," he said.

He assured the over 7,000 flood victims in both Homa Bay and Suba Districts that the Government would supply them with food and other essential items. He, however, urged the Provincial Administration and Kenya Red Cross Society to be wary of ghost beneficiaries.

The body that was retrieved was found about four metres deep by a search team comprising Administration and regular police, the Kenya Red Cross and the National Youth Service.

The continuing heavy rains in the area have complicated the search, raising concerns the bodies might have been buried deeper under the mud.

"A body was retrieved and we are still trying to see if we can find the missing ones. We are not sure if the remaining children are still alive," said the area Regional Commissioner Erastus Ekidor.

Nine children killed

The recovered bodies are lying at St Camillus Hospital Mortuary in Sori town, Migori County.

Mr Ali was flanked by Rangwe MP Martin Ogindo and his Gwasi counterpart John Mbadi who donated 36 bags of maize, three bags of rice and six bags of beans through Constituency Development Funds kitties and promised to give more.

Last Wednesday, flash floods caused havoc in Wiga and Nyaburu villages in Suba District after it killed nine children and left a trail of destruction.