Eight people said to have attended First Lady Rachel Ruto’s 14 anniversary of the Joyful Women Organization (JOYWO) at the Kasarani Stadium in Nairobi on Thursday, have passed away after drowning in a flooded river on their way home.
Red Cross officials in Makueni County confirmed the death of the eight, whose matatu was swept away while attempting to cross a swollen River Muooni on their way from Kavuthu to Mutyambua.
The incident occurred at 11.00 pm last night, according to an area correspondent who spoke with Kenyans.co.ke.
Area chief Norman Musyoki also confirmed that the incident occurred along Kavuthu-Mutyambua Road, and warned that the death toll may rise.
“Witnesses say seven people died. We are trying to ascertain the exact number. They were sitting on a log floating in the middle of the river after being overwhelmed by the raging waters as they tried to cross.
“A sudden swelling of the river swept them away as a crowd of witnesses looked on helplessly,” Musyoki told local media stations, adding that they had warned residents against crossing the river, one of the most dangerous, during the El Nino season.
Emergency services providers were immediately deployed to the accident scene to kickstart the process of retrieving the bodies.
The total number of passengers on board the vehicle, that of dead bodies and survivors, is yet to be confirmed.