Sweet Home Obama
Barack Obama’s father was born near the village where Edwin Okong’o grew up. By the Kenyan definition, that about makes them cousins.
Now living in the U.S. and an associate editor at New American Media, Okong’o was more than a little obsessed with Obama’s candidacy for president. In this Frontline/World video, Okong’o travels back to his home to visit his family and report on how Kenyans viewed the 2008 election.
People love Obama in Kenya, says Okong’o, and signs of the mania are everywhere. Children are named Barack Obama. Barbershops, schools and even a popular beer are named after him.
Beyond that, Okong’o says Kenyans look to Obama because successful people are expected to help their less-fortunate relatives and there is great hope that a President Obama will help the country overall.
As Okong’o travels to his village he reflects upon the similar expectations placed on him by his family. The elders would like him to fund projects around the village and an uncle wants him to bring internet to his cyber-café.
Winner, 2009 Webby People’s Voice Award for Online Film & Video, Documentary, Individual Episode.
Reporter: Edwin Okong’o
Producer: Josiah Hooper
Editor: David Ritsher
Series Producer: Sharon Tiller
Senior Producers: Amanda Pike & Ken Dornstein