Kango Ka Jaramogi: Inside Kenya’s First Vice President Homestead
Kenya’s first Vice President’s home located in Siaya County serves as a repository of the country’s political history as well as a home to numerous artifacts.
Kenya’s first Vice President’s home, the late Jaramogi Oginga Odinga, who is the father to the opposition leader, Raila Amollo Odinga is located in Bondo, Siaya County and serves as a repository of the country’s political history as well as a home to numerous artifacts.
The home is well taken care of with trees that provide a serene environment, as you enter the main gate your eyes will be met by bold writing ‘Kango Ka Jaramogi’ and a statue of a lion, which is a symbol for Jaramogi’s Ford Kenya Party.
Jaramogi had four wives, and in his compound, the houses have been arranged according to the tradition of a Luo home set up, the house of the first wife Mary Ajuma is at the center of the home facing the main gate, which has now been turned into a museum while houses of three other wives have been built at the sides.
In line with the Luo customs, a man is expected to move from his father’s house while still a teenager and build a house called ‘Simba’ for himself while inside the homestead before finally moving out, to the left is the cottage of Jaramogi’s first son, Oburu Oginga and to the right is Raila’s Simba, which is made from wood.
In the middle of Jaramogi's home is a mausoleum, a beautiful structure where the body of Kenya’s fallen hero lays, the entrance has two monuments of a Lion and inside is another monument of a lion mounted on top of where Jaramogi is resting.
In the same compound is a museum that carries the rich history of the Luo community. Inside there is a beautiful display of different artifacts as well personal belongings of Jaramogi which includes his briefcases, shoes commonly known as Akala, his bed, his hat and glasses which he was famous for, and gifts that he received from different parts of the world.
There are knives, the sticks that are made of wood, which over time have evolved. The sticks during those times were a symbol of leadership and have evolved over time. A musical instrument called Nyatiti, clothes made from animal skin which were worn by the elders in the olden times.
Animal crafts such as buffalo, also called Jowi,( in Luo), the display of Lion, hamta beast, Hippo, Buffalo skull, Rhino, Ostrich eggs, Elephant footstool, Cheeter, and a gazelle are some of the artifacts that you will experience inside the museum.
Also part of the compound is a family cemetery where all the family members are buried, including Fidel Odinga.
Odinga's home is a natural heritage center where the history of Kenya's independence is stored(the story of a long journey to freedom).
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