November 4, 2009

Barack Obama’s half-brother breaks his silence about their abusive father


Mark Ndesandjo

Mark Ndesandjo

Barack Obama‘s “intensely private” half brother, Mark Ndesandjo, who has consistently refused interview requests for years, has spoken to the Associated Press regarding his new, self-published novel, Nairobi to Shenzhen, “the semi-autobiographical story of an abusive parent patterned on their late father.

According to the AP report by Wiliam Foreman, Ndesandjo says, “My father beat my mother and my father beat me, and you don’t do that. It’s something which I think affected me for a long time, and it’s something that I’ve just recently come to terms with.”

Ndesandjo’s mother was Barack Obama Sr.’s third wife, marrying her after he divorced Obama’s mother.

This is the first of several books forthcomng from members of Obama’s extended family. According to the report, “Another of the president’s half brothers, George Obama, 27, of Huruma, Kenya, has penned a memoir that will be published by Simon and Schuster in January 2010. Other Obama relatives working on books include a half sister, Maya Soetoro-Ng, daughter of Obama’s mother and her second husband, Lolo Soetoro; and Craig Robinson, first lady Michelle Obama‘s brother.”

Dennis Johnson is the founder of MobyLives, and the co-founder and co-publisher of Melville House. Follow him on Twitter at @mobylives