Threat of Extinction for Persons with Albinism

by Vins

In April 2016 United Nations human rights expert Ikponwosa Ero predicted that in Malawi people with albinism are facing the risk of systemic extinction over time if nobody steps up to the plate to help them. In many countries in African this minority faces this same issue. This is an entire population of human beings that is facing extinction.

For years people with albinism living in the continent of Africa have lived in fear for their lives and the lives of their children. It’s a condition that leaves the skin with very little pigmentation. Those born with this face a grim life ahead of them with high risks of being killed. They are targeted because of an old wives’ tale that their body parts can cure certain ailments. A complete set of albino body parts can sell for upwards of several thousands of dollars on the black market. People with albinism are targeted for the colour of their skin, and somehow the major news networks in Canada are more focused on animals that have albinism. Meanwhile, major news outlets have yet to cover how many people have albinism on the African continent and no one has the numbers of how many have been murdered or attacked.

Sources:

“In Malawi, People with Albinism Face ‘Total Extinction’–UN Rights Expert,” April 29, 2016, http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=53820#.WMoTU_krLIV.

Andrew Ndhlovu, “Malawi: People With Albinism Call for Probe of the Human Parts Market,” AllAfrica, March 6, 2017, http://allafrica.com/stories/201703070269.html.

Student Researcher: CĂ©line Grimard (University of Regina)

Faculty Evaluator: Patricia Elliott (University of Regina)