The Association of People with Albinism in Malawi (Apam) has called on political parties in the country to genuinely fight attacks, abductions, and killings of persons with albinism and not use the vice as a means to promote their political mileage.
Apam president Overstone Kondowe was reacting to Vice President Saulos Chilima’s sentiments during the launch of the United Transformation Movement (UTM) in Lilongwe last weekend that he will end attacks on persons with albinism when he takes over the mantle in 2019.
According to Kondowe, it was imperative that the Vice President shows his commitment to fight the vice by acting now on the outstanding issue which the nation is failing to address other than wait until his movement gets into government.
But UTM spokesperson Chidanti Malunga defended Chilima’s sentiments saying by voicing out at a rally it means the movement is taking part in the fight.
He further said the movement will be giving out details on how it will deal with such issues as outlined in its manifesto.
“The party has outlined a number of issues that it wants to address and all will be rolled out as we go out in the villages. We will be sharing our manifesto and everyone will soon begin to appreciate our efforts,” said Malunga.
Kondowe called Chilima’s sentiments a gimmick to gain political mileage.
“The issue has been outstanding and up to now, no progress is being made to end the attacks. If he has ideas and means why not bring them forward now and save us from the agony we are going through.
“However, our general appeal to all political parties is that they start acting now aside from including the issue in their party manifestos,” he said.
Kondowe bemoaned the slow pace by the court in concluding murder cases to do with the killings of people with albinism.
He added: “A lot of murder cases some dating back to 2014 have not been concluded up to now. This is why we have been asking for an ad-hoc court to deal with these issues. Even the committee that the president (President Peter Mutharika) instituted to look into the
matter hasn’t met since January this year.”
The country’s image has been damaged; everywhere we go people talk of Malawi as a country that kills people with albinism. It seems the whole nation has no clue on how to deal with this issue hence the continued attacks and killings.”
In his comment, Malunga spoke of the need for strong policies and commitment from communities themselves, law enforcers such as the police and the court if the nation is to permanently deal with the vice.