The death toll from floods and landslides in Kenya’s west over the weekend has risen to 52, an official said on Monday.
Bodies were still being recovered in the Pokot region, 350 kilometres (220 miles) northwest of the capital Nairobi, after powerful walls of mud and rock swept away homes and buried people in their sleep early Saturday.
West Pokot Governor John Lonyangapuo said a mother and her three children were among those found by rescuers sifting through the devastation.
“The number of people confirmed dead now is 52”, he told reporters Monday, adding some had been buried and others taken to the mortuary.
Kenya’s interior ministry said Saturday that army and police helicopters have been sent to West Pokot, where the initial death toll was around 30.
Rescue efforts were delayed because roads and bridges had been cut after streams turned into raging torrents, and Lonyangapuo said transport remained a problem.
The Kenya Meteorological Department has warned that more heavy rainfall is expected to lash parts of country until Tuesday, including in West Pokot, and urged people to be on high alert for landslides.
The landslides and floods come amid weeks of destructive rains and flooding across the wider East African region.