Malik Obama, half brother to United States President Barack Obama has entered the runnings as governor in Kenya’s nationwide elections. While he’s unsure what sort of impact his blood relation to America’s first Black president will have on his campaign, he insists that he is his own man, the Associated Press reports.
“I’m going into it as Malik Obama. I can’t run away from my name and association with my brother, but I have the feeling that people somewhat want to see who the brother of Obama is,” the president’s half brother said during a phone interview with the AP.
Malik Obama’s campaign promises even appear to somewhat echo those expressed in his brother’s 2008 campaign. He is rallying for change.
“I hope that you all out there will support me and vote for me for this important position so that we can bring change to the county of Siaya,” 54-year-old Obama said recently while campaigning.
This is Obama’s first time running for political office and he is campaigning as an independent candidate for position as the first governor in Kenya’s western county of Siaya. His competitors are said to be part of well-funded political parties.
Kenyans will cast their votes today for regional offices. It is their first nationwide election since 2007. The country’s newly implemented constitution created 47 political divisions, referred to as counties, which will all be run by governors.
Siaya’s hopeful governor, Malik Obama and U.S. President, Barack Obama share the same father, but have different mothers. President Obama is also reported to have several other relatives residing in Kenya.