The county government of Bomet has said it is buying a new fire engine worth Sh45 million, in the wake of a deadly fire at Tenwek Mission Hospital which was largely blamed on poor disaster response.

Governor Joyce Laboso said two more engines will be purchased in subsequent financial years to ensure that each of the two sub-counties has a truck for effectiveness.

She made the remarks after touring the hospital where fire gutted down a building on Friday evening.

"The fire at the hospital was so unfortunate. My administration will provide assistance so that its operations are not affected," said Dr Laboso.

She led a team of senior government officials to assess the damage caused by fire at the facility, including Energy Cabinet Secretary Charles Keter, Principal Secretaries Peter Tum (Health) and Julius Korir (Roads) and Deputy Governor Hillary Barchok.

Other leaders who were present were Bomet Senator Christopher Langat, Women Rep Joyce Korir, Bomet Central MP Ronald Tonui, Bomet East MP Beatrice Kones, Bomet County Assembly Speaker David Rotich and a host of MCAs.

The county has been criticised for slow and disorganised disaster response which was evident in five different instances of fire break out in the last six months.

In defence, the county said that the two “substandard” fire trucks bought under former Governor Isaac Ruto’s regime have broken down while another is missing.

The County Chief Executive Committee officer for Trade and Tourism Bernard Ngeno, who was the chairman of the budget and appropriation committee in the previous County Assembly said they had budgeted Sh50 million to purchase a standard fire engine, but that Mr Ruto bought “Tata” lorries and fitted them with car wash machines instead.

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