Albinos hide in fear of their lives

– Education is the future.  There are those who think that a good look at their holy book will be sufficient to keep them safe and the world running right.  But it isn’t so.

– This kind of cultural backwater stupidity could be wiped out in time if  we, as a species, would create societies with our own collective good as their highest priority.

– But, we create societies that consider profit, political and military domination and the promotion of one set of spiritual beliefs over another as their highest goals.  And most of us suffer as a result.

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NAIROBI – The mistaken belief that albino body parts have magical powers has driven thousands of Africa’s albinos into hiding, fearful of losing their lives and limbs to unscrupulous dealers who can make up to US$75,000 ($105,000) selling a complete dismembered set.

Mary Owido, who lacks pigment that gives colour to skin, eyes and hair, says she is only comfortable when at work or at home with her husband and children.

“Wherever I go people start talking about me, saying that my legs and hands can fetch a fortune in Tanzania,” said Owido, 36, a mother of six.

“This kind of talk scares me. I am afraid of going out alone.”

Since 2007, 44 albinos have been killed in Tanzania and 14 others have been slain in Burundi, sparking widespread fear among albinos in East Africa.

At least 10,000 have been displaced or gone into hiding since the killings began, says report released by the International Federation for the Red Cross and Crescent societies.

East Africa’s latest albino murder happened in Tanzania’s Mwanza region in late October, when albino hunters beheaded 10-year-old Gasper Elikana and chopped off his leg, the report said.

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