28 April, 2009

The Albino Massacre's in Tanzania(looking Back)

Some time last year Kenyans were shocked in the ongoings in our neighbouring Country Tanzania with regards to the killing and maiming of albinos by certain groups of people(especially in the Mwanza region of Tanzania) all in the name of obtaining body parts for witchcraft purposes! The grim stories of Tanzania Albino massacres caught the international conscious of many nations. A year later i wonder what is being done to stem the practice and or educate the masses against erroneous beliefs or customs that are of such barbaric nature !

It was indeed sad to see the killings were being done under mistaken advice by witchdoctors that magic portions made from skins of persons impaired by albinism could make one rich.The clamour to get rich fueled the trade and even persons impaired by Albinism in Kenya(see this past CCI ARTICLE), Rwanda and Burundi even came under threat from the "lucrative" trade!

I stumbled upon a website that is insightful about an international NGO that has taken upon itself this worthy task .The site is calledUnderthesamesun. founded by Peter Ash a Canadian living with albinism in vancouver.His organization "exists to promote the wellbeing of persons often disadvantaged by disability and/or poverty. The organization wishes to provide a variety of supports and resources to those most often marginalized and misunderstood".

While it is true that the killings and murders have abbated and that the Tanzanian Government was firm and took stern actions against suspected perpetrators(see this insightful NEWYORK TIMES article and BBC NEWS ARTICLE on the Tanzanian Government firm response) the truth is that the issue is a social problem that affects many Countries within the East African region. It is sad that in so many ways persons with certain disabilities continued to be discriminated against or even ignored by the Governments.

As we look back at those spte of killings it is imperative to ask what can be done to ensure that a repeat attack or an underground trade in human body parts of albino impaired persons does not flourish?You and i have a part to play no matter where we live or originate from!

My call hereby is that we all take a part in informing our friends, relatives associates to treat all humans equally and equitably no matter what the impairment or disability.We are all equal and have equal value before our creator.We have more things in common with anyone impaired than thoe that differentiate us, we have more that unite us than those that differentiate us! and we all under close scrtiny are impaired in one way or the other and ought not to distinguish as against another.Killing others based on ethnicity, riches, creed, colour , impairment is crass wickedness, demonic and outright immoral even for persons without or proffesing no belief in God !

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