About 12 children with albinism have stopped learning at St. Mary’s Primary School in Karonga, leaving only two.
Authorities at St. Mary’s Primary School have confirmed the development saying the drop outs have increased in the wake of attacks against persons with albinism in some parts of the country.
So far Malawi has registered 66 cases of attacks against people with albinism.
About six were killed, 14 were kidnapped, three are missing, two were assaulted and twelve people were found with bones suspected to be of people with albinism. One person was arrested for conduct likely to cause breach of peace and 28 for tampering with graves of people with albinism.
Over 69 suspects have been arrested in line with the crimes.
The Roman Catholic run primary school, under the Karonga Diocese, is renowned for accommodating many children with albinism from Karonga and Chitipa districts.
The head of the special needs education at the school, Robert Manda said the school used to have over 14 children with albinism, but the number has drastically dropped to only two.
“The school has a great record on children with albinism but our record now is in endangered due to threat on their lives,” said Manda.
He added: “The school and the community around the premise ensured the security but parents are reluctant to send their children here.”
Manda attributed the alarming level of children drop out to parents’ fear for security of their children even though police patrol the premise every night.
According to the President of the Association of People Leaving with Albinism, Boniface Massa, the abductions and killings of people with albinism have been on arise in the past three months to an extent that it is now affecting learners.
“It is unfortunate that we albinos still don’t feel safe in our own country and this is affecting us as we are failing to contribute to our communities and to a country as whole,” worried Massa.
He therefore pleaded with all stakeholders including Non Governmental Organization (NGOs) to pull up their socks in fighting against the evil practice, saying the battle is not for government alone.
According to statistics, in the past month 66 cases of albino abduction and killings were recorded against the 50 cases recorded in the previous months.
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