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Living in fear: Tanzania's albinos
Twenty-five people with albinism have been murdered in
Tanzania since March, a BBC investigation has found.
Albinos are targeted for body parts that are used in witchcraft,
and killings continue despite government efforts to stamp out
the grisly practice, the BBC's Karen Allen says.

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In Tanzania, 25 albinos have been
killed in the past year.

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The latest victim was a sevenmonth-old baby. He was mutilated
Winifrida Rutahiro (2nd left) says she is
on the orders of a witchdoctor
now scared even to leave her house
peddling the belief that potions
made from an albino's legs, hair, hands, and blood can make a person
rich.
Sorcery and the occult maintain a strong foothold in this part of the
world, especially in the remote rural areas around the fishing and
mining regions of Mwanza, on the shores of Lake Victoria.
Nobody seems to know why the killings are happening now, but
Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete is now putting pressure on the
police to identify where albinos live and offer them protection.
This is not an easy task when BBC investigations suggest that some
police are being "bought off" in order to look away when such
appalling crimes are committed.

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'We want your legs'
The last adult albino to be murdered - just a few weeks ago - was
Nyerere Rutahiro.
He was eating dinner outside in his
modest rural compound, when a
gang of four strangers burst in,
and threatened to arrest him. As
his wife Susannah looked on
helplessly, the men began to hack
at Nyerere's arms and legs with
machetes.

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Nyerere Rutahiro's body was laid to rest
in a cement-sealed grave

Nyerere was clearly being targeted for being albino - but in every
other respect he was an accepted part of his community. A father of
two in his 50s, farming cassava - just like everybody else.
His body was laid to rest in a cement-sealed grave to protect against
grave robbers who often steal body parts of the dead to give to

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/7518049.stm[26/07/2018 4:15:20 PM]

Surprise of Tanzania's albino MP


Tanzanian 'witch killers' charged


Once, albinos used to seek shelter
from the sun. Now they have gone
into hiding simply to survive, after
a series of killings linked to
witchcraft.

"We want your legs," they
shouted, "We want your legs," his
wife recalls, still deeply
traumatised by what she saw.

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