Women with albinism suffering in silence

HARARE - As the country celebrates 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-based Violence starting tomorrow, women with albinism are suffering in silence.

Chipo Kumire, a 50-year-old widow who lives in Chirimamhunga in Seke communal lands says hers is a double tragedy as she was abandoned by her family following the death of her husband in 2004.

The mother of six has also been subjected to unfair treatment by her in-laws who have never accepted her condition and now she is even failing to sustain herself.

“I live in the rural areas and life is difficult for me. I am not included in the village projects and I do not receive donations such as maize seed. I do gardening but I do not realise much from it,” said Kumire.

“My children are neglecting me, they all do not have albinism and some are working but they do not look after me. I looked after them until they were grown up but I do not know why they shun me now,” she added.

Sandra Svinurai, 31, is married with two children, says it is not easy to live with albinism as her in-laws look down upon her.

Her children are all without albinism but she is still blamed for bringing albinism to her husband’s family.

Svinurai says she has a challenge of sourcing sunscreen lotion to apply on her body and she also suffers from poor eye sight.

“When looking for employment we are not regarded as equals with other people without albinism. We are denied employment chances on the basis of the condition,” Svinurai said.

Loveness Mainato, director and founder of Albino Charity Organisation of Zimbabwe, (Alcoz) said her organisation has 582 members in Harare and Chitungwiza and 305 in surrounding rural areas.

Mainato bemoaned the plight of people with albinism saying they needed assistance at government level, saying they are being let down by government in terms of representation, because albinism is not regarded as a disability.

Mainato urged the country to realise the plight of women living with albinism during the 16 Days of Activism.

Comments (4)

Moyo wangu wabatwa nenyaya iyi. munamato wangu uripaviri. chekutanga ndino namatira kuti vasina kuzvarwa vaine dambudziko iri vakwanise kugamuchira zvakakwana avo vakaberekwa vaine dambudziko iri. chepiri ndeche kuti vanedambudziko iri dai mangoziva kuti mwari anokudai just like those who think themselves normal. God bless you with all the needs of your hearts and above all with peace that surpasses all understanding. I am praying for you today. God loves you. you must love yourself too. you're special to God and us. Amen.

pastor - 25 November 2014

Thanks Pastor for that excellent statement. Prayers are all round for these excellent souls who stand more than equal to others in the eyes of our Creator as they have suffered in silence and with quiet and gentle resignation

Derek - 25 November 2014

albanism its indeed a condition however its unfair for anyone to treat them as unequal, they may have challenges of sight, but with glasses they function well. I would wish of government would avail them cheaper sources of glasses and suncreams just like the people with HIv/Aids where governments have stepped in after realising that HIv/AIDs people are as live as anyone with medication. They are productive and just as good as anyone. So NGO and Government need to look into this.

annanian - 25 November 2014

I've first learnt about albinism from this article. I would like to encourage everyone to wake up. What are you doing? If you would have been instead of her, what would you feel? That is difficult to have nobody to rely on. Have you ever thought about it. Every human is unique and some cannot be blamed for having such deseases.

Nurik - 29 November 2014

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