Mombasa Inundated Amid Flush Floods

Several parts of the coastal city of Mombasa and its outlying areas got flooded following a heavy downpour. The heavy downpour that started at the wee hours and continued in the better part of Saturday caused flooding and left residents dazed and marooned in their homes. The incessant rain left many roads and streets flooded and littered with debris as the heavy rain yet again exposed the susceptible city infrastructure. Residents took to social media to express their disappointment at the condition of the roads and posted advisories to apprise people of the situation. The heavy rains caused street flooding and congestion in most parts of Mombasa and left scores of stall owners along the Mombasa-Kwale highway counting their losses after flood waters swept their flimsy structures. Traders interviewed blamed the problem to lack of proper drainage in the town as water did not recede in most low lying streets causing vehicular and human traffic in the town centre for the better part of the day as the rains continued intermittently. Areas such as the Central Business District (CBD), Likoni, Kisauni, Changamwe and Jomvu were affected by the floods due to heavy rains that have been pouring down the city for hours on end. Sections of Muslims in Mombasa that have held Eid-al-Fitr prayers marking the end of the holy fasting month of Ramadhan were forced to offer the special prayers in mosques and community halls instead of open grounds and stadiums. Despite heavy downpour Muslims came out in large numbers to attend Eid prayers and the faithful were drenched in rain water. Residents have expressed their anger and lamented at how properties were destroyed due to the rainwater entering the homes and business premises. Those interviewed by KNA blamed poor town planning, poor drainage systems and climate change for the flooding. A spot check in low lying areas show that residents bore the brunt of the flooding and remained indoors for the better part of the day. Roadside traders said flooding swept away their structures and stalls and the few that remained standing were waterlogged. The heavy downpour that has caused havoc in different parts of the port city have also resulted in vehicular traffic. The weather service last week issued an advisory that more heavy rain of more than 30mm is expected in various parts of the coastal strip and that fishermen were asked not to venture out. The weatherman has further advised against walking in moving water or open fields to minimise lightning strikes. Addressing the media after Eid prayers at Memon hall, Mombasa Governor Abdulswamad Nassir said the county government has formed a disaster management committee to assess and respond to any emergency issues as a result of heavy downpour being experienced in the coastal region. Governor Nassir said the devolved government will constitute a disaster team that will carry out surveys on the extent caused by the heavy rains. ‘The disaster committee will take details of the situation and teams will be deployed to carry out rescue operations if need be,’ he said.

Source: Kenya News Agency