Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Motherland Albinos Targeted in Tanzania

Four albino deaths in the past four months have Tanzania's Albino representatives concerned and determined to stand for justice. Superstitious beliefs in the region prevail that have placed Albino's in danger. Of these beliefs, the notion that the albino condition comes from a curse placed upon the family, seems to justify albino-targeted violence. Another belief some claim Witch-doctors espouse is the idea that the body parts of albino people can be used in a potion to make a person wealthy. Off-center as they may be, the beliefs are dangerous. A teacher in the town of Arusha has been arrested for murdering his own child, who was albino.

An exhumed Albino body has been found to have the limbs cut off, and the BBC's Vicky Ntetma in Dar es Salaam advises there is fear in the albino community. Some people in Tanzania think albinos are a kind of ghost-creature.

"We need to clear out all these beliefs," Chris Dadenekeye of the Tazmanian Albino Society says.

There are approximately 270,000 albinos among Tanzania’s population of some 35 million.
Elderly women with red eyes have been murdered in parts of Tanzania in the past, having been accused of witchcraft, but it is said this is the first time albinos have been targeted in ritual killings.

The Tazmanian Albino Society wants more help for albinos and says the condition should be treated as a disability.

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