A humanitarian crisis is looming in West Pokot County after Ortum market and its environment and many villages in Batei and Weiwei wards in Pokot Central Sub County were swept away by devastating flash floods following the heavy downpour pounding the area.
Hundreds of families have been displaced and rendered homeless in highland areas in the Count after flood waters submerged their homes.
One person, a woman was killed at Muino, Pokot Central Sub County and lightening struck a child at Siyoi in Kapenguria on Friday.
The deluge also destroyed Chemutlokotyo and Tamkal secondary schools buildings.
At Ortum Market along the Kitale –Lodwar high, Kerelwa , Kokotendwo and Muino areas, the raging floods market where residents depend on buying foodstuffs and fresh produce was washed away by flooded rivers following the heavy rains on Sunday.
An old man was rescued from his home after the deluge fell on him and a motorbike suspected to belong to a person carried away by the floods was found, hence people looking for the owner.
The waters entered homes and destroyed crops in farms where some victims were seen trying to salvage households where the area was flooded and people’s houses, business premises and properties were destroyed.
Hundreds of families in the area are living in agony for lacking food, shelter and being subjected to chilly weather conditions after they were displaced by flash floods.
Residents are in dire need of food, clean water, mosquito nets and medical supplies.
A spot check show access to most villages has been cut off, shops swept away and rendered the road infrastructure impassable.
The families and traders are now appealing for humanitarian aid.
They have urged the County and national government and other organizations to supply them with bedding’s, food and other essential items since they moved from their homes and are now camping at the learning center.
West Pokot Governor Simon Kachapin who visited the area on Sunday pointed out that the flash floods destroyed business properties and crops in farms leaving business people and farmers with huge losses.
“We fear a person on a motorbike was carried away by the floods. We have mobilized construction plants, which are already on the ground, clearing the roads affected,” said Mr Kachapin.
The County boss noted that Ortum market was sitting on a time bomb after residents cut trees on the hills.
He said that the County Government has trained Disaster Risk Reduction [DRR] committees and sent them to villages and do sensitization through local radios stations and social media.
Fuel tank at a petrol station has been swept away. We are now assessing the damage.,” said Mr Kachapin.
He said that he will reclaim Muino,Kamatira and other forests invaded by locals.
In 2020 more than 50 people lost their lives, property destroyed and more than 1500 people displaced in Chesegon area after flash floods and landslides occurred in the area.
In 2019, more than 20 people died, massive destruction and thousands displaced in three villages of Muino,Nyarkulian and Parua during the landslides that occurred.