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Alert Raised Over Massive Pollution Of Three Flooded Lakes in Rift Valley.



Alert Raised Over Massive Pollution Of Three Flooded Lakes in Rift Valley.

The National Environmental Complaints Committee (NECC) has raised an alert over massive pollution of three flooded lakes in Rift Valley.

The committee identified Lakes Nakuru, Naivasha and Elementaita as the most affected following the sharp rise in water levels.

In the last couple of months, water levels in all the lakes in Rift Valley have risen sharply, submerging farms, hotels and nearby settlements.

Speaking in Naivasha after visiting the water bodies, NECC Secretary Dr John Chumo, noted that effluents from nearby estates were easily finding their way into the lakes.

Chumo noted that this would have negative effects on the lakes ecosystem in the coming days as the levels continued to rise.

“A lot of effluents has been discharged in the lakes Nakuru, Naivasha and Elementaita while destruction of the catchment area has seen the amount of silt washed in rise,” he said.

He noted that due to the silt, the lakes had become shallower leading to the rise in the levels thus flooding and displacement of tens of families.

“The rise in the water levels has seen tens of families displaced, hotels flooded leading to job losses and there is a need for a multi-agency approach in addressing this problem,” he said.

Chumo at the same time noted that wildlife corridors around the lakes had been closed leading to an increase in cases of human-wildlife conflict.

He added that tens of animals had also been displaced by the swelling lakes and pushed into nearby farms and settlements raising fears of human attacks.

He attributed the current problem to encroachment of riparian land, warning that this should be addressed and the water boundaries reviewed once the water levels dropped.

“There is a need for more studies in Rift Valley to determine the real cause of the rise in water levels in all the lakes which in turn have displaced hundreds of people and wildlife,” he said.

A boat operator in Lake Naivasha Ben Teke said that with the rise in water levels, many small scale traders had lost their source of income.

He said that they were living in fear as there was no space where they could operate from with land owners fencing their property.

This was echoed by another trader Cliff Mukua who called on the land owners to assist them get space to conduct business around the lake.

“Every day the water levels are rising pushing us further away and into private land leading to another crisis and yet we have no other source of livelihood,” he said.

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