News / Africa

Kenyan Village Follows US Election Closely

Sarah Hussein Obama (L), grandmother to President Obama and his uncle Said Obama attend a news conference to celebrates his re-election in his ancestral home village of Nyangoma Kogelo, Kenya, November 7, 2012. Sarah Hussein Obama (L), grandmother to President Obama and his uncle Said Obama attend a news conference to celebrates his re-election in his ancestral home village of Nyangoma Kogelo, Kenya, November 7, 2012.
x
Sarah Hussein Obama (L), grandmother to President Obama and his uncle Said Obama attend a news conference to celebrates his re-election in his ancestral home village of Nyangoma Kogelo, Kenya, November 7, 2012.
Sarah Hussein Obama (L), grandmother to President Obama and his uncle Said Obama attend a news conference to celebrates his re-election in his ancestral home village of Nyangoma Kogelo, Kenya, November 7, 2012.
James Butty
U.S. President Barack Obama and his Republican challenger, Mitt Romney, are crisscrossing America ahead of Tuesday’s election, which polls show is a virtual tie in key battleground states.  

In the western Kenyan village of Kogelo, where Obama’s step-grandmother lives, journalist Daniel Otieno, bureau chief for the Nation Media Group said Tuesday’s election is more than American politics; it is about economics and social status.  

In the western Kenyan town of Khayega, there was a bullfight over the weekend between a 400-kilogram black bull named Obama and a black and white 450-kilogram bull named Mitt Romney. Otieno said the Obama bull won the fight.

“[A] Bullfight is usually a pastime for the people in that area.  It’s one of the entertainments that the people in that region usually have when there are festivals.  This time around, the two bulls were fighting.  One was named Obama, one was named Romney and, eventually, Obama won the fight,” he said.

Most Kenyans consider Obama, the son of a white American mother and a black Kenyan father, as one of their own. 
 
Otieno said the Obama victory was a genuine one because bulls are nonpolitical.
 
“It is very difficult to say that it was a fair fight or a true victory.  Usually, the bulls come from different villages and they usually name them according to festivities or the politics of the day.  I think, because they are animals, the fight was a fair fight,” Otieno said.

Butty interview with Otieno
Butty interview with Otienoi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
 
He said, like in 2008, Kenyans are following the 2012 U.S. presidential election campaign with interest because they consider Obama their son.
 
“They [Kenyans] are following the campaign, especially in Obama’s mother’s village because, since Obama became president, the village has become a kind of a pilgrimage, not only to Americans, but to foreigners visiting the country.  As a result, there’s been development.  So, it is more than the American politics to them.  For instance, it’s an economy and social status,” Otieno said.
 
Otieno said, in 2008, the village of Kogelo did not have electricity and running water, but now it has the necessary infrastructure to accommodate the many visitors.
 
He said Kenyans will most likely be watching the election returns early Wednesday on giant television screens.

You May Like

Video China Investigates Powerful Former Security Chief

Analysts say move by President Xi is an effort to win more party support, take step toward economic reforms, removing those who would stand in way of change More

South Africa Land Reforms Still Contentious 20 Years Later

Activists argue that the pace of land reform is slow and biased; legal experts question how some proposed reforms would be implemented More

In Vietnam, Religious Freedoms Violated, UN Finds

Beliefs reportedly prompt heavy surveillance, intimidation and travel restrictions More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: John Musisi from: Kampala
November 05, 2012 3:40 AM
I am not sure why VOA finds this interesting because really it is not just the Kenyans who are following the US elections closely. It is the entire world.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Gazans in Shelled School Sought Shelteri
X
Scott Bobb
July 30, 2014 8:16 PM
Israel's air and ground assault against Hamas-led fighters in Gaza has forced many Palestinians to flee their homes, seeking safety. But safe places are hard to find, as VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jabaliya.
Video

Video Gazans in Shelled School Sought Shelter

Israel's air and ground assault against Hamas-led fighters in Gaza has forced many Palestinians to flee their homes, seeking safety. But safe places are hard to find, as VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jabaliya.
Video

Video Rapid Spread of Ebola in West Africa Prompts Global Alert

Across West Africa, health officials are struggling to keep up with what the World Health Organization describes as the worst ebola outbreak on record. The virus has killed hundreds of people this year. U.S. President Barack Obama and other world leaders are watching the developments closely as they weigh what actions, if any, are needed to help contain the disease.
Video

Video Michelle Obama: Young Africans Need to Embrace Women's Rights

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama urged some of Africa's best and brightest to advocate for women's rights in their home countries. As VOA's Pam Dockins explains, Obama spoke to some 500 participants of the Young African Leaders Initiative, a six-week U.S.-based training and development program.
Video

Video Immigrant Influx on Texas Border Heats Up Political Debate

Immigrants from Central America continue to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in south Texas, seeking asylum in the United States, as officials grapple with ways to deal with the problem and provide shelter for thousands of minors among the illegal border crossers. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the issue is complicated by internal U.S. politics and U.S. relations with the troubled nations that immigrants are fleeing.
Video

Video Study: Latino Students Most Segregated in California

Even though legal school segregation ended in the United States 60 years ago, one study finds segregation still occurs in the U.S. based on income and race. The University of California Los Angeles Civil Rights Project finds that students in California are more segregated by race than ever before, especially Latinos. Elizabeth Lee reports for VOA from Los Angeles.
Video

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video A Summer Camp for All the World

VIDEO: During workshops and social gatherings, the Global Youth Village summer camp encourages young people to cooperate and embrace their differences, while learning to communicate with people from other countries. VOA's Deborah Block has more.
Video

Video From Cantankerous Warlock to Incorruptible Priest, 'Harry Potter' Actor Embraces Diverse Roles

He’s perhaps best known as Mad Eye Moody, the whimsical wizard in the Harry Potter franchise. But character actor Brendan Gleeson's resume includes dozens of films, and he embraces all the characters he inhabits with equal passion. In an interview with VOA’s Penelope Poulou, Gleeson discussed his new drama "Calvary" and his secret to success.

AppleAndroid