Ocean rescue unit sends warning to visitors intending to swim in Kilifi

Ocean rescue unit sends warning to visitors intending to swim in Kilifi

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Local tourists taking a swim at Watamu Marine Park in Kilifi County. PHOTO: BRIAN OSWETA.

Kilifi, KENYA: Kilifi County Ocean Rescue Unit  has requested visitors in the County who intend to go swimming in the ocean to consult them for safety purposes.

Caleb Otieno, one of the rescue officers said not all parts of the ocean are ideal for swimming as some have caves which could trap swimmers.

Speaking after retrieving bodies of two young brothers who drowned on Sunday afternoon in the Indian Ocean, Otieno said during this festive season everyone must take heed.

The two brothers Keah Panuel 11 years and Essau Panuel 9, went swimming near the Kilifi bridge hopping to enjoy themselves, only for them to drown.

“This festive season we will see so many people from within and outside the county who might come to enjoy themselves, my urge is that anyone who wants to go swimming, let them consult our unit for safety, It would be sad to see people drown out of ignorance,” said Otieno.

The rescue team had mounted a 72 hours rescue mission on receiving the reports regarding the boys disappearing in the rough waters on Sunday evening.

Caroline Mjomba and Panuel Keah, the parents of the boys, looked too shocked to speak to journalists when the bodies of their children were being being taken to the Kilifi county hospital mortuary.

Monica Wamae, the deceased cousin, told Baraka FM that she had had warned them not to go swimming but they insisted they wanted to do so.

“It’s really sad to see the two brothers die untimely, I have no words to explain how painful it is to me,I had warned them earlier  but then they went out unnoticed and carried out their mission only for them to drown,” said a tearful Monica.

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Kilifi OCPD Alexander Makau confirmed the incident and warned the people of Kilifi to be extra careful.

This comes just two months after another Pwani University student drowned at Fumbini while swimming.