Huruma tragedy death toll rises to 10, more trapped

April 30, 2016 3:09 pm
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The building went down on Friday night during the heavy rains that flooded most parts of the city, paralyzing transport. Photo/MIKE KARIUKI.
The building went down on Friday night during the heavy rains that flooded most parts of the city, paralyzing transport. Photo/MIKE KARIUKI.
NAIROBI, Kenya Apr 30 – The death toll from the collapsed building in Huruma has now risen to 10 after three more bodies were pulled out of the rubble.

“So far 10 bodies have been recovered. and we have 80 people who have been treated and discharged from hospital,” Interior Cabinet Secretary Joseph Nkaissery said, adding that rescuers were racing against time to save the lives of people still trapped in the rubble, including a mother and her baby.

“The rescue efforts are still going on because we want to ensure we save as many people as possible,” Nkaissery said. More than 130 people had been rescued by 3 pm Saturday.

The CS has already ordered the arrest of the building owner, architect and engineer who were involved in the construction.

“The owner of the building, the architect and the engineers who were involved in the construction will have to be arrested and charged. They must be brought to book,” he said.

The building owner was identified as Samuel Kamau Wakaheni who has been ordered to surrender at any police station.

A mother and her child were among victims still trapped in the rubble of the building.

“There is one lady who is still alive inside with a baby the debris. We are afraid of bringing the machines so that the debris don’t fall on them,” he said of the delicate rescue operation.

Residents of the area called on the government to ensure they reside in certified buildings, which do not pose risk to their lives.

“I was eating my Omena’s in my house and all over a sudden there was a lot of blast,” one of the tenants who wished not to be named told Capital Fm News of the moment the building went down.

Another blamed the Government officials involved in inspection and approval of buildings of failing in their mandate.

“The Government must protect its citizens,” a visibly Jacob Mutua said.

President Uhuru Kenyatta who visited the tragedy site said he had ordered the evacuation of people living in buildings that were identified to be unsafe.

“I have instructed officials of the interior ministry to immediately move people from houses at a risk of collapsing,” he said.

According to the Kenya Red Cross, a total of 150 households were affected when the house went down during the heavy down pour.

The rescue team officials say they have established that nearly 200 people were residing in the building, but only 133 have been rescued and taken to hospital.

Adjacent houses were being evacuated on Saturday morning following fears they may also collapse.

The building went down on Friday night during the heavy rains that flooded most parts of the city, paralyzing transport.

At least three people were washed away by the floods in South C and Industrial area following the raging floods.

The Kenya Red Cross said estates and slums along Nairobi and Ngong Rivers were worst affected.

They include Hazina, Fuata Nyayo, Land Mawe, Industrial Area, South C.

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