Parliamentary report excites APAM

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The leadership of Association of Persons with Albinism in Malawi (APAM) has, expressed satisfaction with outcomes of meetings that were conducted by a joint committee of parliament on killings and abductions of Persons With Albinism (PWA).

The report presented in parliament on Tuesday by the joint committee is recommending funding to the whole judicial system saying it works in coordination and needs funding in all departments to easily execute its duties on the killings and abductions of PWA.

The report is also challenging the government to seek assistance from foreign counterparts for special investigations into finding markets where bones and other body parts of PWA are sold.

In an interview at parliament, Deputy General Secretary for APAM, Ian Desmond Simbota indicated that the move is commendable.

“The recommendations in the report, if well funded and implemented, can bring change mostly the emergency funding to the judicial system.

“The killings of people with albinism is a crisis and as a country we must come together with concerted efforts to see to it that we have things changed,” pointed out Simbota.

The report presented by chairperson for the parliamentary joint committee, Richard Chimwendo Banda, has however failed to locate where the market for bones and body parts of PWA are sold.

Chimwendo Banda however hopes that the immediate funding that has been proposed will open up chances of finding the truth.

“If you look at the main report, there are 26 murder cases that were reported by the police and out of that, we only have 10 in courts and so the committee believes that if we capacitate the judiciary, we will know where these bones are sold,” indicated Chimwendo Banda.

Other recommendations from the committee report are that PWA must be considered with good housing and where necessary, those at high risk must be relocated.

It is as well an expectation from the committee that police will be given proper transportation to provide security to PWA quickly along with alarms that President Mutharika had promised to buy for those at risk of being abducted and killed.

On Monday, Mutharika swore in commissioners of the newly instituted commission of enquiry tasked to investigate killings and abductions of PWA as presently over 20 PWA have reportedly been killed since 2013.

The newly instituted commission of enquiry on killings, attacks and abductions of persons with albinism is assuring the public that their investigations will be free from political interference.

This is according to chairperson for the committee, retired chief justice Robert Chinangwa.

Chinangwa has narrated that the commissioners will work as Malawians and are concerned with the issue just as everyone else is.

“Malawians should expect that we will work with diligence and commitment in order to get to the root cause of the problem,” indicated Chinangwa.

The commissioners have been given a deadline of 30 April to investigate and establish

Six commissioners for the 8 member commission were sworn in by president Mutharika at Kamuzu Palace in Lilongwe with a 30 April 2019 deadline to complete investigations into the matters.

The other two commissioners yet to be sworn in are Timothy Nyasulu and Grace Massa to represent the clergy and persons with albinism in the commission respectively.

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