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The day Barack Obama danced with Mama Sarah

AFRICA
By Eric Abuga | March 29th 2021
Barack Obama with his grandmother Mama Sarah. [File, Standard]

On the early morning of June 16, 2018 excitement had gripped Kogelo village in Siaya County as its son Barack Obama was due to visit the once sleepy village.

Anxious villagers had been waiting with bated breath for his arrival that morning.

He had last visited the village in 2006 when he was the senator for Illinois State in the US.

His trip to Kenya in the summer of 2006 was part of a 17-day, six-nation tour of Africa that included a visit to his father's village of Kogelo.

On this day, Obama was presented a ceremonial goat in the presence of his now late grandmother.

The former United Sates of America President was visiting after more than a decade.

Inside the tent as Obama was getting in some young girls were performing a Luo cultural dance.

The President sat pensively, on his right was Mama Sarah Obama seated on a wheelchair.

Obama stood and made some moves before his ailing grandmother could join him for the dance amid jubilation and cheers from the crowd.

Not even Obama’s sister Auma Obama could have stopped the nonagenarian from rising to the occasion.

When Obama first visited the village, he helped his grandmother carry a sack of vegetables. Someone took her a photo in the company of the former President.

Mama Sarah, in one of the past interviews, explains how the photo of Obama carrying the sack was taken.

Young Barack Obama with his grandmother Sarah Obama in Kogelo. [Courtesy] 

The grandmother said: "I had told him that he might not be able to manage, but he insisted. When other boys saw him carrying the sack, they were surprised that I had found someone to help, I told them off for not helping me.”

She told the other boys; “I found a young man to help me, so learn from him. And that is when someone took our photo.”

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