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Malawi to impose stiff penalties on albino killers

08 March 2016, 18:05

Lilongwe - The Malawian government has announced the introduction of a special legal counsel to prosecute all attacks on people with albinism in the country.

According to Nyasa Times, the country's ministry of gender revealed that the counsel would be a subsidiary of the ministry of justice and would ensure the imposition of stiff penalties in all cases relating to albino killings and attacks on citizens living with albinism.

In a statement released by Abigail Dzimadzi, chairperson of the Association of Persons with Albinism in Malawi (APAM), over 50 attacks on people with albinism had been recorded between December 2014 and March 2016 alone.

The organisation noted that, while the counsel had received the backing of President Peter Mutharika, the task force had not been fully financed to date, leading to a lapse in implementation and operations.

Also read: Malawi police chief issues shoot-to-kill order against albino killers

The group has since called on government to fully implement the task force without delay so as to protect albino citizens.

The development came just a few days after the country's police chief issued a shoot-to-kill order against albino killers in the region.

According to a previous News24 report, the order was issued to curb the reign of terror by criminal gangs, nicknamed "albino hunters", who have been targeting those living with the condition and selling their remains on the black market.

Believed to possess magical powers, the bones of albinos have become a hot commodity in recent times, with syndicates only working to fuel the demand.

- News24


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