Woman Claiming to Be Obama’s ‘Aunt Zeituni’ Lives in South Boston Public Housing

Oct 30, 2008 11:49am

The father of the Democratic presidential candidate, Barack Hussein Obama Sr., sure tilled the proverbial fields, as we’ve covered before when looking at Sen. Barack Obama’s eight half-siblings and his branch-y family tree, including half-brother George Onyango, apparently living in some sort of shanty in Kenya.

Now, the Times of London and the Boston Globe find someone who appears to be Obama’s long-lost aunt living in public housing in South Boston.

Zeituni Onyango — referred to as "Auntie Zeituni" in Obama’s memoir “Dreams From My Father” — told Boston Housing Authority officials this week that she’s Obama’s aunt, William McGonigle, deputy director of the BHA told the Globe.  A BHA official said her apartment is “adorned with photographs of the Democratic presidential nominee, including some that appeared to be more than two decades old.”

The Obama campaign had no comment.

Onyango told the Times that she is, indeed, Obama’s aunt, the sister of Barack Obama Sr., one of the offspring of Obama’s paternal grandfather Hussein Onyango Obama.

“Just across town from where Mr. Obama made history as the first black president of the Harvard Law Review,” the Times writes, “some of his closest blood relatives have confronted the harshness of immigrant life in America.”

His long-lost “Uncle Omar,” for instance, was beaten by armed robbers and evicted from his apartment.

If Obama wins, I wonder how many of these relatives he barely knows, if at all, are going to start popping up.

They’re a fascinating part of his biography, though his campaign doesn’t seem to like to talk about them much.

It’s pretty astounding that we’ve made it this far with so little known about them.

- jpt

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