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Windstorm leaves Changamwe families in cold

By Patrick Beja | June 27th 2016
One of the 20 houses destroyed by storm at Bokole village, Changamwe. (Photo: Gideon Maundu/Standard)

Mombasa: More than 160 families at have been rendered homeless after a windstorm blew off the roofs of their houses at Bokole in Changamwe.

Residents said the storm took place at around 9.30am Sunday amid light rains. Nobody was injured in the incident that left many in shock.

Changamwe MP Omar Mwinyi and Deputy Assembly Speaker Rashid Mswabah accompanied the Kenya Red Cross team in assessing the more than 20 damaged houses and appealed for humanitarian support from well wishers.

"More than 160 families have been left homeless after the windstorm. We are asking well wishers to help the families rebuild their homes as they are in the cold in this rainy season," Mr Mwinyi, who donated Sh100,000, said.

Mwinyi said the Changamwe Constituency Development Fund committee will sit today and decide the amount to donate from its emergency kitty to assist the homeless families.

He called on the county government to chip in and appointed a committee headed by Salim Mataka to co-ordinate the reconstruction of the homes.

Kenya Red Cross County Co-ordinator Mohamed Rajab said the organisation will carry out an assessment to ascertain the extent of the crisis before making a move. He, however, appealed for building materials to help the families.

"There is urgent need for building materials so that the families can restore blown off roofs. What happened today is a major crisis for the families here," Mr Rajab said.

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Mr Mswabah, who is the Airport ward MCA said residents required assistance as most of those affected are low-income earners.

"Such an incident has once happened in this area, and I know how it hurts. We need urgent help for these people because most of them cannot reconstruct the houses on their own," Mswabah said.

A victim, Almerida Mwalingu, said she was called from church when her house roof was blown off and could not believe the ruins of her home.

Sophia Masugho, a mother of seven, said she was inside the house when the roof was lifted and thrown few metres away leaving her in shock.

"It was a strong windstorm because it carried off the entire roof away. I have been rendered homeless with my seven children," Ms Masugho explained.

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