Anyone related to Howard Ng of Sandakan and Joan of Kudat? Because if you are, you are somehow connected to Barack Obama.

Here’s how. Ng and his wife, Joan, both Sabah-borns, migrated to Canada a more than three decades ago.

Photo by The Star

The photo above is from The Star newspaper

Their son Konrad Ng was born there and later ended up in Hawaii to pursue his education and career. He is now an assistant professor at the University of Hawaii.

The meeting in Hawaii

While in Hawaii, Konrad met Maya Soetoro, who is Obama’s half-sister. They later got married. Maya was born to Lolo Soetoro, an Indonesian businessman and Stanley Ann Dunham, Obama’s mother.


Watching an Independence Day parade in the US four years ago were (from left) Michelle Obama, her daughter Sasha, Obama, Malia, Maya, Ng, and their daughter Suhalia. — AP

Maintaining contact

“I have many relatives who live throughout Malaysia, especially in Kuala Lumpur, Kota Kinabalu and the two towns where my parents came from,” Konrad, 34, told The Star.

The Star did not mention who is the older — Obama or Maya — but after some research, it was clear that Maya is the younger one. Below is a picture of Obama as a young boy and the toddler Maya, with their mother Dunham.

Father left when Obama was two

What happened to Obama’s father? Well, in Obama’s own word: “He had left my mother and myself in Hawaii back in 1963, when I was only two years old.”

“As a child, I knew him only through the stories that my mother and grandparents told,” said Obama. [Source]

Obama was born “Barack Hussein Obama II” at 7.24pm in Oahu, Hawaii on August 4, 1961.

So I guess, Dunham had married Soetoro about several years after Obama’s birth.

On Obama, Ng said, the Democrat candidate was “exceptionally brilliant.”

“He has a thorough understanding of the challenges we face and sound judgment on how we should address these challenges.

“Barack is a dedicated family man and cares deeply about transforming the world into a better place so that all families will have the same opportunities to do better,” he told The Star.

What happened to Obama’s father? He died in a car accident in Nairobi in 1982.

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