On Saturday, 23 November 2019, President Uhuru Kenyatta confirmed that the devastating landslide in West Pokot County has, so far, claimed 29 lives.
The landslide that occurred at 02:30 on Saturday morning, 23 November 2019, has led to massive destruction of property, including key infrastructure such as roads and bridges.
The massive landslides were triggered by heavy downpour that pounded the region for hours since Saturday dawn, leaving a trail of destruction.
The floods that occurred in West Pokot County, over 360 km from the capital, Nairobi, pounded Nyarkulian, Muino and Parua villages in West Pokot, triggered by the heavy rains that are experienced in most parts of the East African country.
According to media reports, rescue mission began in earnest on Saturday morning, with rescuers recovering bodies trapped in an avalanche.
“The landslide that occurred at 02:30 Saturday morning robbed our country of [a] confirmed 29 dear Kenyans and led to massive destruction of property, including key infrastructure such as roads and bridges,” said Kenyatta in a statement issued in Nairobi.
“I have directed the deployment of resources, including rescue personnel from our various security and humanitarian agencies covering the Kenya Defence Forces, the National Police Service and Special Programmes to the affected region so as to provide mitigative action against further loss of lives. The operation will continue round the clock until the situation normalizes,” the Kenyan President continued.
The situation is dire as roads heading to Nyarkulian and Muino have been rendered impassable as security officers are not able to access the mudslide-prone area.
Earlier on Saturday morning, the West Pokot County Commissioner said that people might have been trapped in the avalanche as the rescue teams continue with their search. Okello said that the numbers might increase.