The grandmother of former President Obama died in Kenya over the weekend, the family has confirmed.
Sarah Obama, who married former President Obama’s grandfather and helped raise his father, passed away at the Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Teaching and Referral hospital, The Associated Press reported.
She was at least 99 years old.
In a statement, Marsat Onyango said the former first family has been informed and has sent their condolences. A family spokesperson said Sarah Obama was sick with an illness but did not die of the coronavirus.
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta called Sarah Obama’s passing “a big blow to our nation.”
“We’ve lost a strong, virtuous woman, a matriarch who held together the Obama family and was an icon of family values,” Kenyatta said, according to the AP.
Sarah Obama worked for years to enhance education for children in the poor nation.
The family said she will be buried this week.