Malawi: First Lady Calls for Support and Protection for Persons With Albinism

9 September 2019

First Lady Gertrude Mutharika has called for an intensified support and protection of persons with albinism in the country.

She said this during the first ever Mr and Miss Albinism and talent show in the country that was held in Lilongwe at Bingu International Convention Centre (BICC) on Saturday organized by the Association of Persons with Albinism in Malawi (APAM).

Mutharika commended APAM for their hard work and commitment towards the promotion and advancement of lives of persons with albinism.

She said she was delighted to witness a land mark or achievement of persons with albinism in the country.

"Tonight as we celebrate the lives of persons with albinism, we choose to stand united against all sorts of stigma and abuse towards people living with albinism," the First Lady said.

Mutharika added that Shine within, the theme for the event means that the pageant is beyond outward beauty and appearance.

"This pageant is about brains, boldness and confidence among other criteria and it also celebrates the uniqueness of persons with albinism in our society,"she added.

The First Lady pointed out that the event sends out a message to the mothers holding a little baby with albinism that given the right care and nurturing, the little ones grow to the persons they want to be.

APAM president, Ian Simbota said Persons with Albinism in the country have endured systematic rights abuses and discrimination as such faced barriers in pursuit of their rights.

He said despite all odds Persons with Albinism are still standing strong and that the event is the testimony to the strength, courage, resilience and hope that persons with albinism carry.

"Tonight we are challenging the prevailing negative narratives of persons with albinism and through the beautypageant we are sayingthat, persons with albinism are just like anybody and if given opportunitiesand support they can excel and shine," Simbota said.

He added that the event marks the beginning of the new lease of life of persons with albinism.

"As we showcase courage, beautyand brains we are removing the myths surrounding persons with albinism and affirming their inherent dignity as human beings," APAM Leader said.

He added that it is creating a sense of pride in persons with albinism and breaking the barriers that hold back persons with albinism in our society.

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