76 people confirmed dead as a result of raging floods in last 12 hours

A boda boda rider crosses River Muatineni in Makueni County. Several people died at this section on April 26, 2024. [Stephen Nzioka, Standard]

Seventy-six people have been confirmed dead due to flooding in the country in the last 12 hours.

In the latest update, the government said 19 other people are still missing while 29 have sustained injuries across the country as the rains continue wreaking havoc.

Nairobi County has been listed among the counties that have been greatly affected with a significant death toll of 32 and 16,909 households displaced.

“Sections of various roads have been affected across the country including 10 kilometres in Modogshe – Habaswein road, Modika, Dadaab, North Horr, Isinya and Konzo road,” the update reads in part.

Countrywide, floods have submerged numerous settlements, displacing 24,196 households comprising about 131,450 people.

At the same time, it has been reported that all the Seven Forks dams are now at total capacity.

“There is a prediction of a massive overflow downstream within the next 24 hours. Residents of these areas are advised to move to higher grounds,” the update added.

While there are no reported cases of any disease outbreak, the Ministry of Health has activated a national public health emergency operation and Kenyatta National Hospital to address health concerns.

In Nairobi's Mathare slums, one more person was retrieved on Saturday as the search for other missing victims intensified following the floods that ravaged Nairobi on Tuesday night. 

While confirming the incident, Roysambu Assistant County Commissioner Samwel Macharia urged the victims to be vigilant as they "are not ready to lose more bodies." 

Victims hosted at Mathare North Primary School rescue centre received a donation of Sh1.2 million from World Vision-Kenya.  

The organisation's National Director Gilbert Kamanga said the donation was meant for 1,000 households with 147 families hosted at the temporary rescue centre becoming the first beneficiaries.

"We are giving Sh10,000 for each household and we will increase it as resources come our way because we know that the number of people affected keeps on rising," he said. 

Kamanga further said that World Vision has released Sh50 million towards flood disaster management and response in 37 counties across the country. 

"We have released this on initial response and we are hoping to continue to fundraise," he said. He called on various humanitarian organisation partners to join the initiative. 

This happens even as local rescue groups decry the lack of government intervention saying there is huge demand for humanitarian aid to cushion the victims and assistance in search of missing people. 

Since the floods started, government disaster management teams are yet to respond as the locals are left pulling efforts on their own, at least, to retrieve their missing kin from the debris.

"We have experienced a lot of challenges because there is no support from the government. We have not seen both the county and national government. It is just us, the residents and well-wishers who have been in solidarity," said Daniel Ochieng, Mathare youth rescue team leader. 

"So far we have been knocking door to door asking for help to help the victims hosted at this rescue centre," he added.