Former US President Barack Obama, considered her grandmother Sarah Obama, died at 99 in a hospital in Kisumu, western Kenya, on Monday. We learned from her daughter.
Her daughter Marsat Onyango told AFP on Monday. In Kisumu, she died at Jaramogi Oginga Odinga hospital.
Family spokesman Sheikh Musa Ismail said She did not die of COVID. She was not a COVID patient. She was tested. She had been ill for a week. Yesterday (Sunday), her condition deteriorated. She was hurried to the hospital and settled in intensive care. And she passed away this morning, he explained.
The paternal grandmother of the American president, the one nicknamed "Mama Sarah," was the third wife of Hussein Onyango Obama, born in 1922 on Lake Victoria's shores. This traditional practitioner, a local notable, former British army fighter in Burma, died in 1975.
Although he has no blood bond with Sarah, Barack Obama has frequently made it known that he recognizes her as his grandmother and has allowed her to meet him several times.
Mama Sarah became a national figure after visiting her stepchild in 2006 in Kenya, who was then the only senator from Illinois.
Porridge and donuts
His simple life in rural Kenya was reversed in November 2008 when Barack Obama was elected.
In the playground of the primary school of Nyang'oma Kogelo, next to her house, slightly hunched, the old lady, with a full and cordial smile, had to finish her general distributions of hot porridge and donuts.
His modest home in Kogelo, located 500 kilometers northwest of Nairobi near the Ugandan border, became a tourist attraction, soon protected by barbed wire and guards.
In recent years, in the capital, Nairobi, Barack Obama met with him and his family in 2015 during a presidential visit to Kenya. In 2018, He also visited Kogelo, this time after his term expired.
In a statement, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta praised "a strong and virtuous woman who united the Obama family and represented family values.
He added. She was a loving and valued service person who kindly shared what she earned with the less fortunate people in her community.
After the Barack Obama election, she put her name at international organizations' services and NGOs.
An NGO, camp Maradona, provided financial support to former Argentine football star Diego Maradona, who had made her its goodwill ambassador. Who fought malnutrition primarily through sports.
It also supported the Pan-African Campaign for the Eradication of African Trypanosomiasis and the Tsetse Fly, supported by the African Union (AU).
According to the Muslim rite, she will be buried in Kogelo on Tuesday morning, said Sheikh Musa Ismail.
He added that all the family members were notified, even President Obama, who gave his sympathies.