Obama's illegal aunt seeks asylum
'This type of obstinacy and persistence is well known to the family'
By Chelsea Schilling
World Net Daily
JANUARY 28, 2009
President Barack Obama's illegal alien aunt has enlisted the help of an immigration lawyer to help her win asylum and stay in the United States.
Margaret Wong and Associates is representing Zeituni Onyango, the 56-year-old Kenyan half-sister of Obama's deceased father, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports. Onyango and her lawyer are scheduled to attend an immigration hearing in Boston on April 1.
“The judge will be looking at evidence that they may not have been aware of four years ago,” Michael Rogers, spokesman for Wong, told the newspaper. “Wong is optimistic. We would have preferred to not conduct this case in the media spotlight, but that's not going to happen.”
Onyango, revealed in November to be dwelling on Flaherty Way in a South Boston slum, has been living in the United States illegally, refusing to leave the U.S. for her Kenyan homeland after a judge rejected her request for asylum in 2004.
Boston Housing Authority spokesman Bill McGonagle told the Boston Herald she received a small stipend for working six hours a week as a volunteer resident health advocate in her complex.
“Auntie Zeituni” made a $260 campaign contribution to her nephew's presidential bid from a work address in the city. She proudly displayed photos of Obama, including some that appear as old as 25 years, inside her first-floor apartment, McGonagle said.
The Bush administration issued a directive requiring high-level approval before agents could arrest fugitive immigrants on Oct. 31, the Associated Press reported. Immigration and Customs Enforcement documents reveal U.S. officials were concerned about implications of detaining Onyango in the days before the election.
“The Homeland Security Department censored parts of the document before turning it over to the AP, citing privacy and law enforcement reasons for withholding some of the information, including the name of the person who sent the e-mail,” the AP revealed. “It also blacked out the names of recipients of the directive, making it impossible to determine whether it was sent to anyone outside the department or outside government.”
ICE spokeswoman Kelly Nantel said the order was lifted by the end of November.
Shelli Baker of Boston's WROL 950 AM told WND she went to the Boston apartment with Philip Berg after the election. While Onyango did not answer the door, she said something curious happened.
“I knocked on her door, and a nice young African-American greeted me. He was very happy. He saw my camera. I said, 'Can you tell me, is she still here?' And he said, 'No, she went away with some men in a car about a week ago. It got too hot about these elections with her nephew.'”
Baker asked the man if Onyango would be back. He replied, “I think so.”
She then asked him a strategic question: “Are you all rejoicing that her nephew born in Kenya was elected?”
He responded, “Oh yes. We had a party about that.”
Baker said the apartment management told her they knew Onyango would be back, despite her 4-year-old deportation orders.
“Evidently this type of obstinacy and persistence is very well known to the Obama family,” Baker told WND. “And they're very proud of it.”
Now the Plain Dealer has revealed that Onyango left her home in Boston public housing to escape media coverage in December.
Onyango traveled to Cleveland, Ohio, and hired Wong to assist her in her fight to remain in the U.S.
According to the report, Wong said Onyango stayed with relatives in an African immigrant community while in Cleveland. Rogers said she returned to Boston later in December.
On Dec. 17, an immigration judge stayed an order to deport Onyango.
The judge reopened her case for asylum on Dec. 30, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Executive Office of Immigration Review said.
Earlier this month, Onyango attended Obama's swearing-in ceremony and an inaugural ball at Washington's Renaissance Mayflower Hotel, a historic luxury hotel, the Associated Press reported. Rogers claims she never met with the president during inaugural festivities. She arrived with her immigration lawyer as her guest.