The Kogelo community has called on the government and stakeholders working towards the establishment of Barrack Obama University to have its main campus in Nyang’oma, near the former US president’s ancestral home in Siaya County.
According to the Community leader, Vitalis Awandu Ondewe, they are in agreement that the headquarters and main campus of the proposed institution of higher learning be put up at Katuda village in Nyang’oma where, already, facilities were being developed.
Speaking to the Kenya News Agency in Siaya town on Thursday, Ondewe, who in 2005 was hosted by Barrack Obama in Washington DC said that the community was aware of attempts by some people to have the facility outside Kogelo.
He said that whereas talks about the university named after their famous son has been around for years and even a sign board erected at the Siaya agricultural training centre in Siaya town, none of the brains behind it has ever contacted the community.
The community has never been involved. We only see the sign board whenever we visit Siaya town, said Ondewe who appealed to the ministry of education and the Siaya county government which has been pushing for its establishment to have dialogue with the community.
We are appealing to our son, Barrack and the government to step in and have the facility in our midst and other campuses elsewhere, he said.
Ondewe said that by locating the facility in Kogelo, the government will help boost education and the economy of the area as local children will be saved the agony of travelling long distances for higher education.
He said that the planned visit by the former US president to the land of his father should help the community resolve the matter.
According to media reports, Obama is scheduled to visit the country this month and part of his itinerary is a visit to his grandmother, Mama Sarah Obama and family members at Kogelo.
Source: Kenya News Agency