Cases of attacking or abducting albinos have now resurfaced in Malawi with a 11 year old albino boy battling for his life at Karonga District hospital, after two men kidnapped him and tried to cut his throat and right arm at Ipyana, in the district and albino body parts which were found at Pazani village in the area of traditional authority Mduwa in Mchinji district.
Karonga police spokesperson Enock Livason told Nyasa Times that they law enforcers have prime suspects as Fiskani Mtambo, 35, from Mukwavi Village, Traditional Authority (T/A) Mwenewenya in Chitipa and Sam Wamisi Kaumba, 32, from Cheyama Village, T/A Kyungu in Karonga.
He said on the day of the incident, the two suspects persuaded the boy to accompany them to a nearby market to collect a chicken which his mother had bought, but had ill-motives.
According to Livason, when they got to Ipyana, the two dragged the boy to a nearby forest and started cutting his throat and arm
“Lucky enough, the boy cried for help and well-wishers came to his rescue, but the two suspects managed to escape and we only arrested them after investigations the same day at night,” he said.
Livason said the boy situation is “improving.”
In Mchinji, police spokesman for the district officer sub inspector Moses Kajawa Nyirenda said cops have found the body parts of an albino at Dagrasi Mwale’s garden.
Nyirenda said Police are investigating the matter.
Albinos body parts are desired by witch doctors for use in black magic potions and spells, said to bring love, luck and wealth.
Albinism is a genetically inherited condition that leaves the body unable to produce melanin, the pigment that colours skin, hair and eyes.
Malawi’s Inspector General of Police Lexen Kachama ordered cops to shoot anyone attacking or abducting albinos in a bid to curb the killing of those affected by the condition.
He instructed police to “shoot every criminal who is violent when caught red-handed abducting people with albinism.
“We cannot just watch while our friends with albinism are being killed like animals every day. We do realise that these people are ruthless, have no mercy and therefore need to be treated like that.”
Albino rights activists have called for greater protection of albinos but said that killing suspects was unlikely to deter criminals offered large sums of money for securing body parts as they were likely to still take the risk for the promised reward.
Albinism affects around one in 20,000 people worldwide. It is most common in sub-Saharan Africa.—Additional reporting by Luciano Milala , Nyasa TimesFollow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :