It has been a long week for residents of Solai, Nakuru county. This is after the Patel dam burst washing away an entire village.
Aerial view of the Solai region after the dam burst. photo courtesy: Jeff Angote, Nation Media Group
As of Monday, 15th May, 46 people have been confirmed dead with many more displaced. The dam which is built within a coffee plantation is among the five dams in the coffee plantation with a total capacity of 600,000 cubic meters. The Directorate of Criminal Investigations has since launched an investigation to establish if the dams were legally constructed.The Cabinet Secretary for Water and Irrigation, Mr. Simon Chelugui also promised that all dams will be inspected to ensure they don’t endanger lives.
The government had stated that all missing persons had been found when the body of an 8 year old boy was found in a coffee plantation just 5 kilometers from the dam. As such, the government has urged all the residents of the area to report if any of their family members or neighbors are missing for them to be rescued before the operation is shut down.
Nakuru Governor, Lee Kinyanjui said the government will foot the bills of those affected and waive the mortuary fees for the families. He also promised that his government will continue supporting those affected until they resume their normal lives.
During the rescue operation, the members of the rescue team complained of the poor road network in the region which slowed down their activities. In response, the county boss promised to repair the poor roads that hampered the search efforts.
Family members visited Nakuru Level Five hospital and Nakuru County mortuary on Monday 15th May as plans for burials begin.