Page last updated at 15:10 GMT, Saturday, 31 January 2009

Obama half-brother on drug charge

George Obama
George Obama is the President's younger half-brother

The Kenyan half-brother of President Barack Obama has been arrested for alleged marijuana possession.

George Obama was arrested in Nairobi with one joint of marijuana, police chief Joshua Omokulongolo said.

"He is not a drug peddler. But it is illegal, it is a banned substance," he said. Mr Obama has denied the allegations.

The US president and George Obama share the same father, but are thought to have only met each other briefly.

George Obama, who is in his 20s, is due in court on Monday.

"They took me from my home," George Obama told reporters in Nairobi from his jail cell. " I don't know why they are charging me."

Kenyan family

Last year, George Obama told Vanity Fair magazine that he had only met his more famous half-brother twice, once when he was five and once when he visited East Africa in 2006.

Of their second meeting, George reportedly said:"It was very brief, we spoke for just a few minutes. It was like meeting a complete stranger."

He has also said that he is studying to be a mechanic and works with a local youth group in Huruma, the area in Nairobi where he lives with his extended family.

He is the youngest of his father's seven children and was born six months after his father died in a car crash in 1982.

Several of the president's Kenyan relatives went to Washington for his inauguration on 20 January, though George Obama did not.

The American president described his half brother as a " handsome, roundheaded boy with a wary gaze" in his book, Dreams From My Father.


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