5 Things to Know About the Ritual Killing of Albinos in Parts of Africa

In many parts of Africa, albinos are victims of stigma and ritual crimes.

The dangers that albinos face are very often on the front page of the media, but the why associated with killing people with albinism is avoided for fear of challenging cultural beliefs.

Here are 6 things to know about this practice

Poverty favors stereotypes and murders

In Central and Eastern Africa, killings of people with albinism are commonplace. We talk about them in terms of the money they can bring back. These parts of Africa are also among the poorest.

The sale of albinos is therefore a solution to fight against hunger. Some parts of albinos would sell for up to $ 75,000.

This practice has lasted for centuries

A nineteenth-century scholar, Charles Staniland Wake, wrote in 1892 that when he met a man with albinism on one of his trips to Africa, locals told him that this man was a demonic ghost .

Indeed, they are often considered as sources of curse and in some ethnic groups, they are killed from childhood.

Albinos are deprived of education and economic opportunities


Albinos born in parts of Africa are denied opportunities to go to school to become important actors in society.

Without the empowerment that comes with education and employment, albinos become easy prey for those who seek to hurt them. 

Albinos are seen as cures for certain diseases.

In some areas, the belief that having sex with an albino can cure HIV / AIDS is widespread. In Tanzania, this belief has been the cause of the high rate of rape of women with albinism.

The lack of willingness to fight this practice stems from the involvement of politicians

Tanzanian journalist Erick Kabendera revealed, after an investigation, that the killing of albinos is increasing during the elections. Some engage in just ritual crimes to gain power.

People respond with violence

Because of the lack of willingness of governments and security officials to end violence against albinos, villagers in central and eastern Africa are fighting back by killing suspected wizards.

Unfortunately, older women and some men suspected of having ordered the removal of albinos are lynched in front of the public.


Written by How Africa

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