A country is not one without the people; it is nothing but bare land that has yet to be conquered. And with people comes diversity of race, a different shade of colour. As for Malawi, it also has diversity. But among the people, they are those living with albinism who are being killed mercilessly due to their skin.
“Albinism, a genetic disorder that results in the reduction of the melanin pigment in one’s body. This leaves those with the disorder with a light skin, light hair and vision problems.”
Abductions of people with albinism started in about 2014, when it was rumoured that their skin has the ability to cure deadly diseases, to bring wealth etc. In 2017, at least 39 cases were reported with some people stooping so low as to dig up graves of dead people who were albino, so as to remove their parts. As of 2019, the situation is getting out of hand, living our brothers and sisters filled with fear of the country they are supposed to call home. Schools, homes are no longer safe.
In January this year, a man was butchered while his 9-year-old son watched. In the northern region of the country, a toddler was kidnapped in the middle of the night. A few days ago, a teenager was kidnapped and was found along a farm with some of his parts cut off and his skin peeled of.
People do not understand that albinism is a disorder, we have relied on information of witch doctors and magic which has created a toxic environment for our own people.
These killings keep increasing the more and more closer we get to the tripartite elections, leaving one to assume that even our lawmakers and politicians are somewhat involved in this chain. The government has done close to nothing to safeguard their people, other than the incumbent leaders standing on podiums and spitting empty promises.
Our judiciary is far worse; the few people who have been arrested for one of the killings have their cases being dragged in our court houses. The policemen are yet to revel the cartel that is existent or the market that is there because no man will be killed if the demand isn’t there.
As I write, I feel that as a country, we have failed every person living with albinism. We have failed to give them the right to life; we have failed to provide security to them, WE HAVE GENERALLY FAILED. So maybe, the only other deed we can do is help them find asylum in other countries where they can have a somewhat normal life, where they do not have to constantly look past their shoulder or lose their sleep. It is the least we can do surely.
It is my prayer that Malawians learn the basics of humanity, that we learn to love each other.