THE Zimbabwe Association of Albinos last week cornered Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai at the burial of Professor John Makumbe in Buhera and accused his government of neglecting its members and failing to provide for their special health needs.
Report by Moses Matenga
The association’s vice-chairperson Richard Nyathi said the inclusive government had done nothing to address their plight since its formation nearly four years ago, resulting in thousands of them dying every year due to health complications.
Makumbe was national chairperson of the association.
“He (Makumbe) helped us to emancipate the lives of albinos. For 16 years we have tried to convince government, but they say our problem is a small problem,” said Nyathi.
“We have a merciless government that supports fights against HIV, malaria and other diseases, but forgets that we have a disaster and we are dying because we don’t have cream to protect ourselves from skin cancer and other diseases.
“Here in Buhera some of our people could not come because of the weather. I was angry with (Health) minister (Henry Madzorera) who said he didn’t know that we had a problem. There is no action from government. I was very angry with him because there is no action from government. Government must take the education and health of the people seriously.”
Tsvangirai pledged to address the issue urgently.
“Yes, you have a problem, but we are not ignoring you, but the ministry should be playing its role. It can’t be a government that ignores its people while they die,” Tsvangirai said.
Meanwhile, a serious drought is looming in Buhera as shortage of fertiliser is threatening the crops with the local leadership now appealing to government for assistance.
Despite President Robert Mugabe’s $20 million agricultural input programme and Tsvangirai’s drip irrigation programme at his rural home in the area, hunger continues to stalk the villagers.