5,000 people displaced as Lake Naivasha water levels rise

The current situation in Kihoto estate in Naivasha, where water levels in the nearby Lake Naivasha have risen sharply, displacing over 5,000 people. Tens of latrines and boreholes have flooded, raising fears of a disease outbreak in the coming days. [Antony Gitonga, Standard]

At least 5,000 people have been displaced as Lake Naivasha water levels rise sparking fears that the numbers could increase in the coming days.

The most affected is Kihoto estate which borders the lake with tens of boreholes and latrines flooded raising fears of waterborne diseases outbreak in the area that hosts flower farm workers.

Wild animals including buffaloes and hippos have also been adversely affected after pasture around the riparian land was submerged pushing them to nearby farms.

One person died after he slipped and fell into a flooded borehole.

Lakeview MCA Alex Mbugua warned that the situation was worsening by the day as the number of affected families continues to rise with no support from the national government.

Mbugua said that the county government was overwhelmed by the situation.

“Over 5,000 people have been displaced so far and things could get worse as water levels continue to rise by the day flooding homes, boreholes and latrines,” he said.

While calling for assistance from the national government, the MCA noted that several schools had been closed down, one person had died and supply of clean water had been cut off.

Viwandani MCA Mwangi Muraya said wildlife displaced by the floods had moved to nearby estates endangering lives of locals.

Muraya noted that the county had provided water treatment drugs and more support was needed to help affected families.

“There is a major disaster looming in this estate if no action is taken and we are asking the national government to assist in relocating the affected families,” he said.

Michael Wainaina, a resident, said that this was the second time that the estate has been marooned by floods.

“Residents are being forced to go home early due to the high number of hippos and buffaloes that are roaming around posing danger to residents,” he said.

Samson Otieno, a resident, said that they had been forced to live in the flooded houses since they do not have money to relocate elsewhere due to the harsh economic times.

“We do not have money to relocate to other estates, we fear our houses could collapse and we are asking the government to come to our rescue,” said Fanice Auma.

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