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Govt develops plan to tackle perennial floods

14 May 2013, 12:34 Oduor Omondi

The Ministry of Special Programs has developed a 20-year action plan to effectively deal with the flood situation across the country, Permanent Secretary Andrew Mondoh has disclosed.

Mondoh who was accompanied by PS Mark Bor of the Ministry of Public Health and Sanitation said the plan will be implemented in three phases; short term of 18months, mid-term which will last up to 5 years and long-term which is anticipated to last for 20 years.

Speaking when he conducted an intensive tour to flood prone areas in Muhoroni, Nyando and Nyakach, the PS explained that the long-term strategy will include construction of large dams to store flood water for irrigation and other purposes.

“In the short-term, we plan to construct check dams on individual farms to stop further destruction of crops and loss of top fertile soil by the raging floods,” Mondoh pointed out while addressed flood victims camping at various rescue centers.

He was accompanied by Nyanza Provincial Commissioner Francis Mutie, Kisumu County Commissioner Lornah Odero, Nyando District Commissioner Isaiah Tonui alongside Legislators Fred Outa (Nyando), James K’oyoo (Muhoroni) and Aduma Owuor (Nyakach).

The PS emphasized the need for local communities to conserve the environment which if not done culminates in the raging floods that have created havoc in various parts of the country by sweeping away crops, causing deaths and destroying properties worth millions of shillings.

“This can be done through river training which proved quite successful in Budalangi, growing trees (a forestation) and digging small check dams on farms to curb the raging flood,” the PS observed.

Mondoh commended the various partners - Kenya Red Cross Society (KRCS), World Vision, Plan International and UN-OCHA among others - for their concerted efforts to minimize the suffering of the flood victims.

He announced that flood victims in Nyando, Nyakach and Muhoroni Districts will be given 300 bags of rice, 200 bags of beans, 50 Cartons of oil, 300 blankets, 200 tarpaulins and 150 nets each.

PC Mutie said the flood situation was a short-term challenge which will soon be tackled, but warned that if necessary measures are not taken in time then learning in some schools could be temporarily disrupted.

He re-assured the public that the Government has stayed on top of things by making sure that security, relief food and health services are offered to the flood victims even as they move from their homes into the rescue centers.

However, he cautioned Chiefs and their Assistants to first give priority to the most needy victims.

Mutie also warned that any administrator found selling the relief food should brace themselves to quit public service as they will be summarily dismissed for thriving on the misfortunes of others.

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