TORORO – Residents of Amoni village in Malaba Town Council have mounted a search for a woman who is suspected to have drowned in River Malaba as she tried to cross the flooded river.
Eyewitnesses told this website that a one Regina Ekakol is believed to have been swept by floods as she was trying to uproot vegetables that she had planted along the river banks which were being submerged by the flowing water.
Mr. Celestino Obbo one of the survivors confirmed that several people fell victim, but fortunately escaped because they managed to cling on the swinging tree branches along the river banks before they were rescued by relatives.
Mr. Obbo said most of them had gone to work in their gardens and as they continued to cultivate the later, water volumes started building up until they were engulfed by the water.
He said the floods swept off most of their crops including maize, sorghum, beans, yams, Matooke, poultry and livestock among others.
The floods reached some homes leaving hundreds displaced after their houses were submerged and the ones with weak walls collapsed.
Mr. Christopher Igwalat 56, whose house was submerged, says his family survived because the floods ravaged the area in the morning when most of them had already woken up. He believes many lives would have been lost if the floods had occurred during the night.
Mr. Igwalat said most of his crops, animals and poultry were taken by the floods and he does not have an alternative place to resettle as his entire land is submerged.
‘’I appeal to government and well-wishers to come to our rescue otherwise we do not have alternatives,” he said.
Mr. Julius Olungor 23, a resident of Amoni A cell another victim says his kitchen collapsed and the water swept all utensils away.
Mr. Michael Ekakol 65, a senior citizen says the area has never experienced floods since 1962, where floods claimed lives. He blamed the floods on human activities that resulted into tampering with the natural bands that had grown along the river banks.
Mr. Cosmas Ekisa the LC1 chairperson of Amoni A village confirmed that the floods have affected over five villages from both the Ugandan and Kenyan side.
He appealed to the government to intervene or else the impact of the disaster is most likely to increase if the rains persist.
He said the affected areas are at a high risk of waterborne disease outbreaks especially after the pit latrines were submerged.
“We have advised some of the affected families to relocate to their relatives’ homes which are away from the proximity of the floods because as a local council we do not have the capacity to resettle the affected families,’’ Mr. Ekisa said.