CORD leader Raila Odinga has sent his wife Ida Odinga a hearty birthday message on Wednesday, August 24.
“Many things have changed over the years but you remain the same wonderful person I met all those years ago. May God bless you on your special day. Happy birthday,” reads Raila Odinga’s message to Ida.
Mrs Odinga is a teacher by profession.
She established a women’s voting league in 1991 and became known as the face of defiance during Kenya’s one-party regime. She is among the first women to head a major corporation in Kenya.
“It’s good to be a wife, but it’s good to be an educated wife. Being a wife, it’s just not a position of subordination, it’s a position of strength,” she told CNN’s Felicia Taylor in a 2012 interview. “And I make him (Raila Odinga) stronger by being strong.”
In December, 2015, Ida told Citizen Television’s Lillian Muli that she went through a difficult period in most of the 80s when her husband was jailed by president Moi’s government.
“When Fidel Odinga turned 9 in 1982, there was a change in our lifestyle because the father was arrested, charged with prison and then later on detained. For six and a half years from 1982 to February, 1988 I brought up these children alone.”
And about being a politician’s wife, Ida told Lillian Muli: “There are no colleges or institutions that prepare women to become politicians’ wives. Life is a bit difficult being a politician’s wife because everybody and anybody can say anything about you. As a person, you can draw your own boundaries.
“The most important thing is whether you are a politician’s wife, if you made a decision, stick by them. As a wife, you can also talk to your politician husband if you think he is doing something wrong. I personally get messages from people telling me: ‘urge Jakom to do this…”
Raila Odinga and Ida Odinga have been married for over 42 years now.
Happy birthday Mama Ida Odinga!