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Apam fears for members

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The Association of People with Albinism in Malawi (Apam) has said it fears for the worst, especially as Malawi prepare for the May 21 2019 Tripartite Elections.

Apam President, Overstone Kondowe, said, from experience, they know that the election period becomes a difficult time for them.

“Studies show that, as countries such as Burundi and Tanzania were moving towards elections, cases of attacks on people with albinism increased and that brings fear in us,” Kondowe said yesterday.

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Briefing the media in Lilongwe yesterday, Kondowe said people with albinism need a guarantee that their lives will be protected in the run up, during and after elections.

“If the government is not translating its commitment into action that guarantees protection for people with albinism, this country will not be good for people with albinism as we are going closer to elections,” Kondowe said.

He called on political parties to include strategies for dealing with attacks on people with albinism in their manifestos.

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Apam added that it has lost trust in the legal mechanism that relies on police, further calling on President Peter Mutharika to institute an inquiry into the issue so that those involved can be taken to task.

“You have heard about missing files and these files are also being destroyed by police officers. It is very difficult for us to trust a body which is also part of the syndicate that is terrorising people with albinism,”he said.

Kondowe also talked about threats to a witness in the case relating to the murder of Macdonald Masambuka, citing a woman with albinism who has relocated from Machinga to Lilongwe for security reasons.

Since 2014, 147 cases of attacks on people with albinism have been reported, of which 45 suspects have been prosecuted, representing a 30 percent completion rate.

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