Barack Obama and his step-grandmother: Although there was no blood relationship between him and Sarah Obama, Barack Obama repeatedly referred to the Kenyan as a grandmother and visited her several times. (Source: Thomas Mukoya / Reuters)
Death in the family of the former US President: Barack Obama’s step-grandma died at the age of 99. In Kenya, she was a national celebrity.
The step-grandmother of ex-US President Barack Obama, Sarah Obama, is dead. The 99-year-old died on Monday morning in a hospital in Kisumu, West Kenya, said her daughter Marsat Onyango to the AFP news agency. Because of her kinship with the US politician, Sarah Obama was a celebrity in her home country.
Sarah Obama, born in 1922, was the third wife of Hussein Onyango Obama, the grandfather of the former US President. Although there was no blood relationship between him and Sarah Obama, Barack Obama repeatedly referred to the Kenyan woman as a grandmother and visited her several times.
Sarah Obama achieved national fame after a visit by the then Senator from Illinois in 2006. After Obama’s election as US President two years later, Sarah Obama’s house in the village of Kogelo near the Ugandan border became a tourist attraction thanks to barbed wire and security guards had to be protected.