Death toll rises to 65 in Kenya flooding over weekend

Death toll rises to 65 in Kenya flooding over weekend, more than 80,000 people affected

NAIROBI, Kenya -- Heavy rains in Kenya unleashed a deluge that killed five people overnight in the Rift Valley, raising the death toll from weekend flooding to 65, officials said Monday.

The five were returning home after attending a wedding in Tanzania when their car was washed away, said Daudi Loronyokwe, a police chief in Kajiado Central community.

The victims included three children, he said.

Governor John Lonyang’apuo said between 80,000 and 120,000 people have been affected in West Pokot county, the worst hit by the floods and mudslides. The governor said at least 52 people were confirmed dead there.

“I have lost three children,” said one resident, William Lokapel. He described how his wife managed to struggle to safety, clutching another child, after the mudslide covered their home while they slept.

The torrential rain is uncommon for this time of year. Parts of the country could continue to face destructive flooding this week, the Kenya Red Cross said. The aid group

Evacuations continued.

“No one can sleep in their homes for now because we don’t know when the next land slide will occur,” resident Peter Lokor said. “So many people have been affected, actually all those who live in this area, and everybody is afraid of going back home.”

The Kenya Red Cross cited what it called a record-breaking temperature rise in the Indian Ocean in recent weeks that also has caused flooding in South Sudan and Somalia.

Now Djibouti is affected. The Horn of Africa nation’s capital reportedly saw more than three times its annual rainfall between Thursday and Sunday alone, the United Nations humanitarian office said. More heavy rains are forecast.

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