Chekamos residents urge the government to resettle them after a landslide hit the area

The landslide caused damage, with houses and livestock swept away
The landslide caused damage, with houses and livestock swept away

Hundreds of residents from Chekamos location in West Pokot County are camping in schools following a landslide that occurred in the area three weeks ago.

The landslide which buried some of their houses and farms has left most of the people homeless and they’ve appealed to the government to also consider resettling them because they have no place to call home.

They stare at a bleak future now that schools will be opening next week, yet they had been converted to camps.

A visit to Ptoo primary school where more than 20 families are camping revealed that most of the people do not have beddings, food and other items as they had to head to move to safer grounds after the government warned them of landslides.

The landslides however didn’t kill any humans but some livestock were buried alive and property was destroyed.

Chekamos sub location chief Julius Longuriareng said more than 390 people have been affected in his location and are camping at Ptoo, Kareu, Topno, and Simat primary schools.

“They are not in a position to go back to their homes because the area is still unsafe and is prone to landslides. They are living in camps because their houses were buried, roads destroyed and their food stuff were also buried in stores,” he said.

He appealed to the government to consider resettling them to safer grounds citing that some are sick and can’t access health facilities.

Kapenguria MP Samuel Moroto visited some of the families camping at Ptoo primary school and donated food stuff and bedding to the victims.

Moroto said the government has focused on victims who were affected in Pokot south and central sub counties adding that there is no much support given to the people who were affected in West Pokot sub county.

“The multi urgency committee should also think of resettling the ones affected in my constituency because they can’t go back to their homes which are still in a dangerous condition. The schools are almost open and parents do not have school fees for their children,” he said.

He asked the government to deploy landslide experts to survey the whole of the West Pokot mountainous areas and caution residents against living in dangerous areas.

He added that it was fortunate they didn’t lose lives after the tragedy and residents have vowed not to go back to hilly areas. The landslides that occurred in Pokot Central and South sub counties in November claimed more than 50 lives and displaced more than 1500 people who are now living in Paroo, Nyarkulian and Parua camps.