Parliament calls for enhanced expert investigations on attacks of persons with Albinism

Written by  Doreen Sonani

The Joint Parliamentary Committee that was instituted to address issues on violence against people with albinism in Malawi has proposed that the country should seek special assistance from foreign security agencies to investigate the issue of attacks and abductions of persons with albinism as a way of dealing with the issue.


Chairperson of the joint committee Richard Chimwendo Banda made the remarks in Parliament on Tuesday when he presented a report on the committee’s findings following a spate of kidnappings and killings of people with albinism that have been registered in some parts of the country.

Chimwendo Banda says that the committee recognizes the capacity gaps that exist within the country’s law enforcing agencies which have compromised the quality of investigations conducted in the course of the crimes.

“Notably, the committee is worried with the lack of clarity surrounding the issue of the existence and location of the said ‘market’ where body parts are being sold. This matter can further be investigated by foreign experts who can provide direction in terms of sophisticated investigative and interrogation techniques," says Chimwendo Banda.

The joint committee which comprised of 15 members drawn from Parliamentary Committee on Social and Community Affairs, Legal Affairs and the Defense and Security, also recommends the establishment of an emergency fund to mobilize funds that will enable all concerned agencies to perform their planned actions in curbing the malpractice.

The committee has also maintained its position that Malawi is in a state of crisis as violent attacks and discrimination against people with albinism have reached alarming high levels that need to be halted as soon as possible.

On a positive note, the chairperson appreciates efforts that all relevant government and other non-governmental agencies are implementing to address the situation. Several other members made contributions to the report and later the House adopted it.

Meanwhile, His Excellency the President Professor Arthur Pater Mutharika has since made a number of directives to address the committee’s recommendations which include the institution of a commission of inquiry to get to the bottom of the killings and abductions of people with albinism, directing the Minister of Finance to immediately fund the outstanding activities in the National Action Plan which includes equipping ad empowering police to protect people with albinism, directing the construction of safe houses for vulnerable persons with albinism as well as to engage international investigation experts to be part of the process of getting down to the motives and people behind the killings and abductions of persons with albinism.

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