Barack Obama’s step-grandmother led celebrations in his ancestral Kenyan homeland today as he rolled to re-election and a second term in the White House. Meanwhile children at his old school in Jakarta celebrated in their classrooms as the results were announced. Sarah Onyango Obama was seen singing and dancing in Nyang’oma Kogelo village where she lives in western Kenya, some 400km north of the capital Nairobi – is also the place where the president’s late father Barack Obama was raised.
Limelight: President Barack Obama’s grandmother Sarah Hussein Obama, attends a news conference as she celebrates his re-election in his ancestral home village of Nyangoma Kogelo
Proud: Sarah Obama, raises her cane in celebration before she speaks to the media about her reaction to Obama’s re-election, in the garden of her house in the village of Kogelo, western Kenya
Time to celebrate: Kenyan supporters dance as they gather to watch the news coverage of the US Presidential election on televison in Nyang’oma Kogelo village, where President Barack Obama’s late father Barack Obama Sr. was raised
Hundreds gathered clapping and cheering in front of a screen to find out the results of east Africa’s favourite adopted son. Well-wishers, family members and armies of local and foreign journalists have descended on Kogelo, the tiny village in western Kenya where Obama’s 91-year-old step-grandmother lives.
Since 2004, when Obama was running for the Senate in Illinois, the Harvard-trained lawyer and civil rights activist has enjoyed rock star status in Kenya.
Babies have been named after him, drinkers knock back ‘Senator’ beers in his honour, pop stars sing his praises and ‘Obama: The Musical’ opened in the capital Nairobi on Sunday.
The result was good news for the village’s witch doctor John Dimo – earlier this week he tossed some shells, bones and other items to determine who would win the election.
After throwing the objects like dice outside his hut in Kogelo village, Dimo, who says he is 105 years old, points to a white shell and declared: ‘Obama is very far ahead and is definitely going to win.’
Happy: Obama’s supporters throw their hands in the air as they rejoice late into the night
But it was not just the east African nation that was jubilant after the Democrat won re-election, there were also celebrations in his childhood home of Jakarta.
The first to sixth graders of SDN Menteng 01 grade school watched the election results on two television screens set up near their concrete courtyard where the president used to play..
A statue of a young ‘Barry’ Obama, as he was known as a child stands outside the school he attended in Jakarta.
A young Mr Obama moved to Jakarta when he was six, after his divorced mother remarried an Indonesian, and lived there until he was 10.
Supportive: The students cheer as they watch US presidential election on television