Zomba district commissioner (DC) Emmanuel Bambe has commended UN Women for its awareness campaigns on protecting the rights of persons with albinism.
Speaking at Namitembo Parish in Zomba Chingale on Saturday during an awareness meeting, the DC said as much as the district council wants persons with albinism to be protected, it cannot do it on its own.
In his remarks, Association of Persons with Albinism (Apam) general secretary Maynard Zacharia said district councils have a role to play to ensure that persons with albinism are not left behind in the nation’s development agenda.
Department of Disability and Elderly Affairs director of programmes management and evaluation Felix Sapala said persons with albinism can be as successful as any person.
“When they go to school, they must find a good learning environment; when they are sick, they must access health services just like any other person,” he said.
According to UN Women human rights specialist Habiba Osman, the awareness meeting in Zomba is part of a second phase of a project called Ending Violence Against People with Albinism which will take place in six districts, namely Zomba, Mangochi, Ntcheu, Dedza, Mulanje and Chikwawa in collaboration with the Ministry of Gender, Children, Disability and Social Welfare.
The project’s goal is to establish community-based protection systems, provide psycho-social support and material assistance to persons with albinism as well as increase community awareness of their rights.
During the event, UN Women donated safety and security gears such as solar torches, hats, bicycles, umbrellas, reflector jackets, whistles, road-block sign posts and assorted stationery to police and persons with albinism. n