Residents urged to move to safer grounds.

By Susan Njire

Turkana County Commissioner Muthama Wambua has warned adamant residents living near the banks of River Turkwel of imminent massive destruction and displacement noting that the Turkwel dam is nearing it’s spillage level of 1,150 meters above sea level.

Mr. Wambua confirmed that the dam which had only 3.96 meters remaining before spillage on September 4 currently has 2.53 meters remaining by October 12 adding that with the ongoing heavy rains in the Mt Elgon catchment area, there could be a sudden spillage of water.

He said that together with Governor Josphat Nanok, they have toured various high risk villages appealing to residents to vacate the low lying areas along River Turkwel.

“I am surprised that some people who accepted to move to higher grounds during our assessment visit early this month have gone back to grounds that are currently at risk of flooding. Most residents are neither fishermen nor farmers but they don’t want to move to safe grounds,” said Mr Wambua.

Water resources authorities WRA has also warned that parts of Lodwar town near Turkwel river risk being submerged if the ongoing heavy rains persist and result in spillage from Turkwel Dam.

However Lodwar Township MCA Robert Lowoko explained that the reason why many residents are hesistant to move is that authorities have not directly allocated land to resettle villagers who are living near the river.

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