Former Kenyan Journalist, George Ogindo, Passes On
Mr George Ogindo, a Kenyan Journalist who resided in Stockholm for many years before going into pension in Kenya, has passed on. Mr Ogindo, who was 82, passed away after a long illness.
Following the sad news, relatives and friends have been plunged into deep mourning. Mr. Ogindo left for Kenya in 2004 and has since been living in quiet retirement.
ARRIVAL IN SWEDEN
Before he arrived in Sweden in 1975, Mr Ogindo worked with various Kenyan newspapers as a reporter during the Presidency of the late Mzee Jomo Kenyatta.
As a result of his work, his relationship with the Kenyatta government was turbulent, and as his writing continued to pose a threat to the government of the day, he fled Kenya and settled in Sweden in self-imposed exile.
Mr Ogindo was one of the leading Kenyan intellectuals of his time. He not only understood the core domestic details of Kenyan politics but was also able to see through the façade of neo-colonialism that engulfed Kenya. The emergent imperialist domination of Kenyan politics, economy and culture constantly came under attack in his writings.
Because of his grasp of the ideological dimensions of international politics, the Kenyan writer was slightly ahead of his contemporaries. By then, the ideological battle raged between the socialist former USSR and the imperialist government of the United States that was seeking dominance across the world.
ASSASSINATIONS DURING KENYATTA DICTATORSHIP
Following the assassination of J.M. Kariuki by the Kenyatta dictatorship in 1975, Ogindo was one of the writers who criticized Kenyatta’s tyrannical tendency, which came hot in the heels of the assassination of Tom Mboya, a brilliant Luo politician and trade Unionist.
Under the circumstances, Ogindo’s views could not be consistent with the murderous political demeanour the Kenyatta dictatorship had assumed barely a few years after Kenya’s flag independence. Consequently, Mr Ogindo found himself in cold exile in 1975.
Back in Sweden, Mr Ogindo continued to remain vocal against the Kenyatta dictatorship while at the same time freelancing and publishing his works in media outlets that could accommodate his views.
Apart from politics, anyone who had the opportunity to interact with Ogindo will attest to his comprehensive knowledge of African history, more so, the history of the Luo Nation.
Ogindo was what one could call a “proud Luo” with broad knowledge in Egyptology, Luo culture and what he termed “The genesis of the Luo Nation”.
With incredible oratorical powers, Ogindo could give hours of lectures about Europeans’ whitewashing of African history. He deconstructed the myth of white civilization and uplifted the dominance of African civilization before the colonization and conquest of Africa by European invaders.
DECEPTIVE AFRICAN INDEPENDENCE
Mr Ogindo strongly believed in the concept of the African renaissance. His take was that the growing knowledge of authentic African history would eventually seep through the African continent in the coming generations to increase the consciousness of Africans who, he perceived, will have to rise and take their rightful place in all spheres of life.
In mourning George, Kenyans mourn the departure of an illustrious son of Africa who truly believed in African liberation.
His fundamental thesis was that the entire concept of Independence of many African countries was deceptive.
According to him, raising the national flag and singing the national anthem created the illusion of independence.
However, his view was that the colonizers of Africa exploited the independence celebrations to construct the foundations of perpetual external dependencies based on Western aid on the one hand and internal exploitation of Africa’s vast human and natural resources on the other.
All those who knew and loved him will significantly miss Mr Ogindo’s vast knowledge, inspiration, wisdom, and insight into several aspects of human life.
FUNDS DRIVE IN SWEDEN
Friends in Sweden have set up a WhatsApp group to mourn the departed son of Kenya and collect funds to be forwarded to the family to help with his funeral arrangements.
The funds will be channelled through Linet Ogindo, a family member. The Ogindo family contact group comprises Mr Albinus Odada (Chairman), Mr Okoth Osewe (Secretary) and Mrs Hellen Opwapo (Treasurer).
Friends, well-wishers, sympathizers and all people of goodwill are kindly requested to join the WhatsApp group to mourn Mr Ogindo and to pay homage to this fallen comrade. The group link is provided below.
Mr Ogindo sired four children but is survived by two children after two of his children passed away. He is also survived by several grandchildren.
May the family of the late Ogindo find strength and courage to go through this very challenging moment marked with deep sorrow and mourning.
God giveth and God taketh away.
May Mr George Ogindo’s soul Rest in Eternal Peace.
WhatsApp Link: https://chat.whatsapp.com/GvapHXuESd195ve5L2kETy
George Ogindo Family Support Group