Minister of Gender, Children, Disability and Social Welfare Jean Kalirani has urged Malawians to stop the malpractice of killing and abducting people with albinism saying the act dwindles social economic development.
Kalirani made the remarks during the International Albinism Awareness Day commemoration at Nkolimbo School in Ntcheu. This year’s commemoration was under the theme “Advancing with renewed hope.”
The minister said the malpractice brings fear among people with albinism that makes them not to fully participate in various activities that could boost the country’s social economic development.
She asked people at the gathering to do away with the attacks to give room to people with albinism to participate fully in the country’s development.
“It is a saddening that men, women and children with albinism are still living in fear and denied freedom to movement. This is leading to their limited participation in and access to social and economic empowerment activities; psycho-social trauma and self-isolation.
“It is for this reason that as a nation, we indeed need to protect and include people with albinism in development areas,” Kalirani said.
She added that government through her ministry is working tirelessly to end the attacks.
According to Kalirani, her ministry will strengthen collaboration with all stakeholders including the media to promote and protect the rights of persons with albinism at all levels of the country.
In his remarks, President of Association of People with Albinism in Malawi (Apam) Overstone Kondowe underscored the need to tighten the security of people with albinism especially in border districts which he said are prone to such attacks.
However, Member of Parliament for Ntcheu West Mwai Kamuyambeni said Parliament has enacted stiff laws to punish perpetrators, in the wake of a spate of previous killings and abductions.
The activities to mark the occasion included a three kilometre solidarity walk from New Era Secondary School to the venue and a parade by the police and persons with albinism. There were also traditional dances, poems, and comedies.
People with albinism in the country are still living in fear because of some inhumane people who kill and abduct persons with albinism.