Malawi President Peter Mutharika has directed all security agencies in the country to be on high alert to catch and punish those behind a series of albino killings.
He told a news conference in the capital Lilongwe on Thursday that the attacks on albinos are barbaric and ordered security agencies to intensify a manhunt for the killers.
“We have been deeply shocked with these attacks and killings of the people living with albinism. This is inhuman and barbaric and we condemn it in strongest terms,” he said, adding:“As commander In Chief of Malawi Defense Force and the Malawi Police Services, my message to those perpetrating this is that, we will hunt you down and not relent until apprehended and justice takes full course on you.”
“I’ve directed the minister of internal affairs and all security agencies to be on high alert and arrest all people responsible for attacks, abductions and killings,” the Malawi leader said.
“ I’ve further directed the minister, inspector general [of police] and all security agencies to provide maximum protection to our brothers and sisters with albinism,” he added
Mutharika also called on the judiciary to conduct speedy trials of suspects in the attacks.
Fifteen albinos have been reported abducted and killed in Malawi since the start of the year.
Albinism is a condition where people are born with little or no pigment in their skin and hair. People with the condition tend to stand out in Africa, and are sometimes targeted by witch doctors who use their body parts in so-called magic potions.
Witch doctors often tell clients that albino body parts will bring them luck in love, life and business.
However, President Mutharika assured the nation that he will not allow people born with albinism to live in fear of losing their lives because of their condition following some peoples “unreasonable beliefs.”
Mutharika’s comments came a day after the Catholic Church in Malawi accused him of taking a “passive approach” on the problems faced by people with albinism.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :