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Rain, a mixed blessing for people

By Winnie Onyando November 11th, 2023 2 min read

The Kenya Meteorological Department has predicted consistent rainfall in the country all through to April 2024.

In a statement on October 31, 2023, the Met department announced the changes in weather saying all counties will see different amounts of showers at different times of day across specific days.

“Rainfall is expected over several parts of the country including the Highlands West of the Rift Valley, the Lake Victoria Basin, the Central and South Rift Valley, the Highlands East of the Rift Valley, the Coast, and Northeastern Kenya,” read the statement.

These forecasts serve as a source of livelihood for many.

They stand ready to offer their services, ferrying fellow citizens from one end to the other. The unexpected catalyst for this newfound entrepreneurial spirit? Poor drainage systems and pervasive flooding.

Just as in previous years, places like Kibera are once again transformed into makeshift waterways. Residents now take advantage of their stranded neighbors.

Men are now taking up the responsibility of ferrying people through the rising waters, finding innovative ways to navigate the challenges presented by these tumultuous rains.

The going rate for these unsung heroes often ranges between a modest Sh10 to Sh20, a nominal fee considering the invaluable service they provide.

Yet, why does the Nairobi Central Business District and its outskirts frequently succumb to flash floods and stagnant water during the rainy season?

The answer lies in outdated drainage designs, inadequate waste management, and encroachments on road reserves.

Trading activities, particularly the sale of building materials like sand, stones, and ballast, contribute to the growing problem as some of these materials find their way into the drainage systems, further obstructing the flow of water.

Nairobi’s battle with flooding remains a testament to the resilience of its residents and a stark reminder of the urgent need for comprehensive and innovative solutions to mitigate the impact of heavy rains. In the face of adversity, Kenyans continue to display resourcefulness, working together to adapt to the blessings and challenges that the rainy season brings.

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