Kenya Chief of Defence Forces General Kahariri visits Mai Mahiu flood victims

On Saturday, May 4, 2024, General Charles Kahariri, the newly appointed Chief of Defence Forces (CDF), paid a visit to the victims of the devastating floods in Mai Mahiu.

This marked General Kahariri’s inaugural assignment since assuming the position of CDF, a role bestowed upon him by President William Ruto on May 2.

The Kenya Defence Forces issued a statement indicating that General Kahariri’s objective in Mai Mahiu was to evaluate the ongoing rescue operations led by KDF soldiers and to oversee the recovery efforts in the aftermath of the destructive flooding, which tragically claimed lives, displaced numerous individuals, and caused extensive damage to infrastructure and property.

Upon his arrival, General Kahariri was greeted by Maj Gen John Nkomo, who provided him with a comprehensive briefing on the progress of the recovery operations.

During his visit, General Kahariri also engaged with Nakuru Governor Susan Kihika and other local leaders present at the site to discuss the situation and coordinate efforts.

To date, the collaborative efforts of the multi-agency team have resulted in the recovery of 58 bodies of flood victims in Mai Mahiu.

Addressing the flood victims, General Kahariri emphasized the KDF’s role in not only providing assistance but also in proactive measures such as informing the public about flood-prone areas and advising them to relocate to safer locations.

He underscored the importance of collective action in serving the nation effectively, emphasizing the need for vigilant monitoring of high-risk areas and raising awareness among vulnerable populations.

General Kahariri’s itinerary included visits to Ngeya Girls Secondary School, where flood victims were being sheltered, as well as Georges and Magathi Bridges, two areas significantly impacted by the floods.

Meanwhile, Governor Kihika expressed gratitude to the KDF for their invaluable support, particularly in the search and recovery operations.

General Kahariri’s visit to Mai Mahiu closely followed President Ruto’s visit to the area on April 30, 2024, during which he pledged government assistance, including the construction of houses and coverage of medical and burial expenses for the flood victims.

The devastating floods in Mai Mahiu were triggered by the bursting of the Kijabe dam on April 29, 2024, resulting in loss of lives and displacement of residents in Kamuchiri Village, underscoring the severe impact of the ongoing heavy rains across the country.