The curse of white skin: albinos are persecuted white people

Only this year in Malawi, a state in East Africa, six people were killed suffering from albinism ... for the sake of amulets. (Photo: GIANLUIGI GUERCIA / AFP).


Albinism is a hereditary disease that is associated with the lack of tyrosine enzyme in the body, which is necessary for the formation of a pigment in the skin - melanin. (Photo: GIANLUIGI GUERCIA / AFP).


The skin without pigment is very vulnerable to sunburn and various serious diseases, including cancer. (Photo: GIANLUIGI GUERCIA / AFP).


Malawi albinos are working hard on tea and tobacco plantations. They live in poor huts and they do not have the slightest prospects that their lives can change for the better. Moreover, white skin became a terrible curse for them. (Photo: GIANLUIGI GUERCIA / AFP).


The superstition that supposedly white skin and some parts of their body possesses magical power exists mainly in East Africa and is spread by healers and shamans who use their body parts as components for various ritual potions, elixirs, claiming that their use will bring success to customers. (Photo: GIANLUIGI GUERCIA / AFP).


"To be white, or muzungu, in Africa means to be someone better. Therefore, it is believed that parts of the body of albinos are very valuable and that’s why black use them as amulets, " says Helena Goldon, who works for the World Bank and lives in Tanzania, where albinos are also being harassed because of superstitions. (Photo: GIANLUIGI GUERCIA / AFP).


The hand or leg of an albino can cost up to three thousand dollars. The hair of albinos, for example, is weaved into fishing nets, supposedly to increase catches. And wearing amulets made from bones or genitals of albinos should supposedly bring luck and wealth. Therefore, the dismembered body of a person suffering from albinism in Africa can cost up to 75 thousand dollars. (Photo: GIANLUIGI GUERCIA / AFP).


Stupid superstitions led to the fact that people who suffer from albinism, especially in villages, are attacked for profit. They are killed to cut off their limbs, and even after death, their graves are robbed with only one purpose to sell the "magic" parts of the body. They use the head, skin, eyes, genitals and blood of albinos for magic rituals. (Photo: GIANLUIGI GUERCIA / AFP).


We told you about albinos from the Nkole area in Malawi, where only six of them were killed from the beginning of this year according to official data. Persecution of albinos is also widespread in other countries of East Africa. (Photo: GIANLUIGI GUERCIA / AFP).


Gangster groups in many African countries hunt albinos, like animals, track them, surround and kill them. They always do it the same way: they cut a live person into 4 parts. (Photo: GIANLUIGI GUERCIA / AFP).


Paradoxically, violence against albinos is also associated with fear that they are allegedly cursed and bring disaster. The locals call them zeru or "spirits". (Photo: GIANLUIGI GUERCIA / AFP).


The incidence of albinis varies from 1: 5000 to 1: 15000 in different countries. But in some parts of Africa this disease is more common, for example, 1: 1400 in Tanzania. (Photo: GIANLUIGI GUERCIA / AFP).