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Heavy rains cause destruction in Meru

By | Dec 2nd 2011 | 2 min read
By | December 2nd 2011

By Patrick Muthuri

Property worth millions of shillings was destroyed after raging floods submerged shops in Kathera Estate in Meru.

Residents of the Estate near river Kathita Bridge woke up to find their houses ‘hanging’ after a landslide hit a section of the estate displacing about 20 families.

Houses at the estate which lies along the Meru-Nkubu road were left with gaping cracks and are at risk of collapsing.

The heavy rains started on Thursday evening to Friday morning.

Business premises, houses and vehicles at Riverside Trade Centre were submerged in floodwaters after heavy rains pounded the area for 12 hours, leaving business people counting losses.

Patrons who were in a bar at the Trade Centre as it rained escaped drowning and had to be rescued from the bar using ropes.

Residents blame the poor drainage system in the area.

"I have incurred losses of about Sh90,000. The Meru Municipal Council should take responsibility and compensate us because this is a result of their negligence. This is the second time we are experiencing floods because of poor drainage system," Paul Mutethia, a Kinyozi operator said.

"I have lost over Sh100,000 to the floods. All my Salon equipment have been destroyed as well as crates of eggs I had left in my salon," said Christine a Salon owner.

Nicholas Mutethia a resident of Kathera Estate said the land slide happened at around 1am, causing an old Mugumo tree that has been standing on the cliff to fall, blocking a section of the Meru – Nkubu road at river Kathita bridge.

"We petitioned the council to put gabions to reinforce the cliff but they never took action. The rains continue to eat away the cliff towards the houses and some have developed cracks," David Kirimi, a tenant said.

The residents called on the Meru Municipal Council to urgently put in place proper drainage to prevent a repeat of the incident.

Effort to get a comment from the Meru county council was unfruitful as the officials were said to be out of town in a meeting.

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