Albino people in Uganda want to be treated in the same category with the disabled

Reports Leo Odera Omolo

ALBINOS have petitioned the Government to include them in the category of people with disability to enable them benefit from development programmes.

Joseph Katete, the chairman of the Elgon Foundation for Persons with Albinism (EFPA), said there was need for the Government to build schools for children with albinism.

The albinos attending a meeting at Dreamland Inn in Mbale town on Saturday. They want to be included in the category of persons with disabilities

“Albinos have sight problems and, therefore, cannot study well in class with other children and this situation is sometimes compounded by stigma and discrimination,” he noted.

Katete also called for the need to help albinos get specialised doctors and access items like sunscreen, caps and sunglasses to protect them from the sun.

He was speaking at one-day meeting at Dreamland Inn in Mbale town on Saturday.

The participants observed that the Persons With Disability Act of 2006 defined disability narrowly, thereby excluding albinos.

Musa Kimaswa, who studied business studies at the Mbale based Islamic University, said this may explain why they are never considered for affirmative action.

The meeting came up with a one-year budget proposal of about sh40m.

The participants expect to solicit the money from members, government agencies, NGOs and the community.

It is hoped that when the funds are secured, the albinos will be able get an office, carry out advocacy programmes in the communities and train members in entrepreneurship skills.

The participants resolved to continue demanding for their rights and equalisation of opportunities using national and international legislation.

EFPA, which brings together albinos from Mbale, Kapchorwa, Manafwa, Bududa and Sironko districts, was founded two years ago with 15 members. It now has 64 members.


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