A human rights campaigner has spoken of how she and other people with albinism are “hunted like animals” in her home country of Malawi. 22-year-old Tumeliwa Mphepo, who has recently completed a fellowship at theUniversity of Dundee, waived her anonymity to speak out against the ritual killing of people with the condition.
Mphepo said: “People like me are being hunted like animals in Malawi and other parts of Africa. There has been a big increase in the number of atrocities against people with albinism, with some 159 cases in Malawi in just a few years.”
Amnesty International has described the situation in Malawi as a human rights crisis, with those who abduct and kill people with albinism – particularly children – largely going unpunished.
Mphepo was one of three in the fellowship, which is a partnership between the university and the ScottishGovernment, although the others can’t be named so as to not put them at risk.
With the possibility of torturers and murders breaking down their door back home, Dundee has allowed them to properly rest. One of the fellows said: “Here I have gone to bed without fear. I am relaxed in Dundee because I know the police will not raid my home in the middle of the night. We have all had a break from persecution inScotland.”
Equalities Minister Christina McKelvie said: “It has been a pleasure to welcome the human rights defenders to Scotland and I hope they found their time here as rewarding as I found it inspiring.
“I hope it gives them energy to continue their essential work – ending discrimination and upholding human rights.”
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