The Chairperson of the African Commission on Human and Peoples Rights’ Working Group on the Rights of Older Persons and People with Disabilities in Africa (the Working Group), Commissioner Yeung Kam John Yeung Sik Yuen, received with shock news of the murder of Munghu Lugata, a 40-year-old woman with albinism in north-western Tanzania on 12 May 2014.
The Chairperson of the Working Group is deeply concerned at this monstrous display of barbarism in the killing of a person with albinism.
The Chairperson of the Working Group strongly condemns such crimes, which are often motivated by the use of body parts for ritual purposes.
Article 18 (4) of the African Charter recognizes the rights of persons with disabilities and provides that they shall also have the right to special measures of protection in keeping with their physical or moral needs.
During its 54th Ordinary Session which took place in Banjul, the Gambia from 22 October to 5 November 2013, the African Commission adopted a resolution on the Prevention of Attacks and Discrimination against Persons with Albinism on the Continent which recognizes the widespread discrimination, stigma and social exclusion directed at persons with albinism and called upon State Parties to take effective measures to eliminate any type of discrimination against persons with albinism, and to accelerate education and public awareness-raising activities. In addition, work has begun towards drafting an African Protocol on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
The Chairperson of the Working Group, whilst taking note of the effort of the Government of Tanzania and more particularly that of H.E. President Kikwete to fight this serious violation of the rights to life, dignity and protection from inhuman treatment, calls on the Tanzanian authorities to assume full responsibility, and to duly investigate and bring perpetrators of these gross human rights violations to justice; in accordance with its regional and international human rights obligations.
The Working Group continues to monitor the situation of persons with albinism in the United Republic of Tanzania.
Done in Banjul, 26 May 2014