Prevention of Killings of People with Albinism
Geita District is one of the areas with rapid growing incidences of albino killing and industry for selling albino’s body parts to miners and fishermen. According to 2009 Census conducted in Geita District by Geita Commissioners Office, Geita District had a total population of 122 people with albinism. Most of the people living with albinism have been victims of violence and some of them killed or became disabled due to their body parts being chopped off. Officially there are 46 albinos who have been killed in Tanzania but this number could be higher given that only a few incidences had done up being reported. An increased number of school drop-out among the albino children have been noted as some family members with albino kids decided to hide their kids in their houses fearing the increased brutal murderers and violence targeted on albino children. Consequently these families lack time to engage in gainful activities as they spend all their time protecting their albino children. This has ultimate effect to rendering these families impoverished.
Mining activities which take place within Geita attract influx of people from other parts of Tanzania and outside the country with diverse cultural backgrounds. Some of these people believed that in order to be rich through mining activities blood from albinos and their body parts must be obtained. It is believed tat the body parts of people with albinos have magical powers capable of brining riches if produced with by local witchdoctors and used as medicine. This is the genesis of the killings and mutilating of the albinos.
The main problem that this project is addressing is:
“in-adequate psychosocial support and legal protection to people with albinism in Geita District of Tanzania”
Whereas the key root causes of the problem include:
- Deep rooted belief in witchcraft and magic power among witchdoctors, the community and to some business people involved in fishing and mining activities in Mwanza Region including Geita District of Tanzania.
- Trading of albino body parts among witchdoctor and business people in their superstitious beliefs for long good health, life and riches.
- Low public awareness campaign against albino killings in the district, albino child rights and protection measures against neglect, exploitation, abuse and discrimination.
- Ignorance on the origin of albinism and human rights especially in the remote areas.
These problems have denied people with albinism their fundamental right to live, the right which is emphasized by the Constitution of the United Republic of Tanzania of 1977, African Charter on Rights and Welfare of the Child of 1999 and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child which was adopted on 20 November 1989 and entered into force on 2 September 1990.
To contribute to the fulfillment of the right to live for people with albinism with particular focus on albino children in Geita district by 2012.
- To support communities to be better organised, strengthened and able to take actions to prevent and mitigate albino killings in Geita District by 2012.
- To increase the capacity of people with albinism to reduce their vulnerability to human rights abuse, hunting and killings and to address inequality with regards to children rights in Geita District by 2012.
- Ton enhance the institutional and operational capacity of NELICO to respond to the priority needs of people with albinism on issues of their rights protection and prevention of their killings in Geita District by 2012.