Obama inspires half-brother to run for office in Kenya
Wednesday, January 23, 2013 - 01:40
Jan. 22 - Malik Obama, the Kenyan born half-brother of U.S. President Barack Obama launches his campaign to be governor of a rural Kenyan county. Deborah Gembara reports.
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He has the famous last name -- now Malik Obama, the Kenyan born half-brother of that other Obama (image of Barack Obama from inauguration) is hoping he'll have as much success in the political arena.
SOUNDBITE (English): Malik Obama, Half Brother Of U.S. President Barack Obama saying:
"The fact that Barack is the president of the United States has opened up a lot of doors, it has broken the glass ceiling. Nobody can say because we are black, we cant do this, because we are African we cant do this and so forth, so I want that connection to be alive and breathing when they see not only in America but also in Africa."
Fifty-four year old Malik is running for governor of a rural Kenyan county. Unlike his brother, he's running as an independent outside candidate--- a fact that could make things difficult in a country rules by tribes and clans. He's also received some advice from his younger brother.
SOUNDBITE (English) Malik Obama, Half Brother Of U.S. President Barack Obama saying:
"Be honest, to be sincere and to have a tough skin because people will be shooting at you, they will be throwing everything at you and especially the media, there will be propaganda there will be stuff like that but as long as I am sincere in what I'm doing and I am focused, to go ahead and do that because at the end of the day the truth will always be the judge."
Malik, who was the best man at his brother's wedding lives in the U.S., but spends a lot of time working in Kenya. He's hoping that will change after the elections this March. He's also betting that his experience outside of Africa will be seen as a strength hence his campaign slogan -- "Just as it is in United States, I want it here."
SOUNDBITE: Kogelo resident George Ochome saying (Kiswahili):
"I live here in Kogelo and I will vote for Malik my vote because Malik has brought a lot of development here. He has built bridges. He has helped widows and even orphans,"
If things go well, Malik says he might one day consider running for Kenya's highest office.
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