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BY JOAN WANJIKU,NAIROBI,12TH JUNE 2019-Google has today designed a special doodle in celebration of the life of the award-winning author, medical doctor, and human rights advocate the late Dr Margaret Ogola.
The doodle appeared on Google’s homepage in Kenya on Wednesday and coincided with what would have been the late author’s 60th birthday.
Dr Ogola is best known for her novel, The River and the Source, which was a set book in KCSE from 1999 to 2004. The novel won the 1995 Commonwealth Writers’ Prize best first book in the Africa Region, and the Jomo Kenyatta Prize for Literature the same year.
The River and the Source follows four generations of Kenyan women in a rapidly changing country and society. The book has been translated to Spanish, Lithuanian, and Italian. It is one of the four publications credited to the author.
“Local doodles provide a way for Google to connect with Kenyans about what matters to them and to help celebrate the important moments. We celebrated Wangari Maathai and today we’re celebrating a literary figure, Dr Margaret Ogola,” stated Dorothy Ooko, head of communications and public affairs, SSA.
Dr Ogola wore several other hats, other than that of writing. She was the Medical Director of Cottolengo Hospice for HIV & Aids orphans from 1994. It is a role that saw her receive the Families Award for Humanitarian Service of the World Congress of Families in 1999 in Geneva, Switzerland.
She was also a paediatrician at Kenyatta National Hospital and headed the Family Life Counselling Association of Kenya (FLACK) and the Health and Family Life Programme at the Kenya Episcopal Conference. The latter entailed coordinating the administration of over 430 health facilities run by the Catholic Church in Kenya.
Google started honouring people, events, anniversaries and holidays with doodle designed by one of its engineers in 1999.
A special reading of her book The River and the Source will be held at Prestige Bookshop, Mama Ngina Street at 5pm. Readings will be led by her family and several Kenyan authors as part of the commemoration.