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Like a rose, Rosemary Odinga begins to bloom

Alvin Mwangi @PeopleDialyKe

At exactly 12.30 yesterday, Kibera erupted as a frail-looking but cheerful Rosemary Odinga made what appeared a triumphal entry into the Raila Odinga Educational Centre.

Women danced and crowds jostled in an attempt to catch a glimpse of a woman, who only last year was poised to become area MP and heir apparent to the imperious Odinga dynasty.

But a sudden illness, however, cut short her apparent seamless sail to the august House — and the Opposition chief Raila Odinga’s eldest daughter vanished from the limelight with reports indicating she was battling a brain tumour.

And accompanied by her aide Caroline Achieng and Nominated MCA Catherine Okoth, yesterday was the first time Kibera residents saw her in public since February last year when she underwent a surgery that cost her sight.

Getting better

“Leo sina sauti sana kama vile mmenizoea (my voice is not as strong as you know it),” were the first words she uttered when she faced media and residents that thronged the venue where she received 60 sewing machines donated to the Educational centre by Korean NGO, I Love Africa.

It was emotional for many to see the once vibrant woman unable to walk without support. However, a close family friend said she is getting better, even if her sight was deteriorating.

“I am getting more confident now on my new life after losing my sight following the surgery,” said Rosemary.

She asked the community to take advantage of the sewing machines and free training to acquire job creating skills.

“I am happy to see you people get these machines which I know after the training will play a big role in addressing the issue of unemployment in our community,” she said.

I love Africa board president Lee Chang said beneficiaries will get three-months training and get tested by National Industrial Training Authority (NITA).

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