Yesterday, my heart was broken by the news that a 14 year old boy with albinism was abducted in the area of TA Chilikumwendo in Dedza district.
Like all of you, I am horrified by this latest act of gross brutality, which has become a shameful stain on our nation, this being the third such abduction in the last two months. If you are a Malawi citizen, especially if you are living with albinism or living near someone with albinism, I share your heartbreak at this news.
BUT I GIVE YOU THIS ASSURANCE: once I am sworn in as President this May, with the Malawi Defense Force, the Police, and the National Intelligence Bureau at my command, I will end these crimes within one month.
But you maybe wondering why President Mutharika is not using these same powers to end these abductions and murders. Well, I can tell you why.
People living with albinism would not be targets for these abductors and murderers if there was no market for their body parts. The only reason these killers are emboldened to keep doing this is because there is a market that demands the supply. So all President Mutharika needs to do is order the Police to squeeze the murderers who have already been caught doing this in the past, so that those criminals can reveal the people they supply to, and then those people can be arrested.
We know that our skilled men and women in the Police Service are able to do this, because we have seen them do this against other types of crimes.
We have seen our police catching drug users, and then squeezing them for information to catch the drug lords financing the trade. We have seen our police catching people with illegal forex, and then squeezing for information to catch the people financing the trade. We know that our police are able to find the people whose money is financing these murders, but somehow our police are not using the information acquired from the arrested criminals to track down the buyers. And in this country, there is only one person who has the power to stop the Police from tracking down the buyers, and that person is President Mutharika.
President Mutharika knows that as a country, we already have a National Action Plan to stop these murders, an action plan that requires 3 billion kwacha, but he has not yet found the motivation to release money from the treasury so that we can deal with this once and for all. All it needs is 3 billion kwacha, and he cannot find it in his budget, but he can find 53 billion kwacha to pay for overpriced uniforms for the Department of Immigration. The only person who has the power to put 3 billion kwacha in the budget to implement the National Action Plan to stop these murders is President Mutharika.
So Fellow Malawians,
You need to know that whoever is in the syndicate that is buying the body parts of people with albinism is deemed so powerful that the police feel restrained from arresting them; the buyers are deemed so powerful that the murderers feel motivated to continue killing for them; the buyers are deemed so powerful that the President continues to resist funding the National Action Plan to stop these murders; the buyers are so powerful that the President continues to resist using his constitutional power as Commander in Chief to order the police to bring them to justice.
So I only have three words to President Mutharika: DO YOUR JOB!
Stop being a coward and do your job. Stop refusing to fund the National Action Plan, and do your job. If you do not end this, these murders will be the legacy of your one term presidency. But even though your time of leading this country is up, we will keep demanding that you do your job. In fact, I am calling on all Malawians to join me and all CSOs as we march to your house on March 3 to demand that you do your job.
Now to all Malawians living with albinism, I know you are living in fear:
~ I promise you that as President from this May, I will bring the entire syndicate and market that has been financing these murders to justice, and it will take one month.
~ I will work with CSOs, the Police, the Army, the Association of People living with Albinism, the international community, neighboring countries, and local communities where people with albinism live.
~ My government in waiting is mobilizing special personalized devices that each person with albinism and the families they live with will be equipped with to alert a rapid response unit of the police when they feel threatened.
~ I will set up special rapid response units of the police in every ward specializing in tracking down suspects of this evil.
~ My government will also provide housing for every family in which a member is living with albinism, houses specially designed with security features to detect intruders.
~ I will also provide each of those families with social welfare payments to improve their living conditions and address their unique vulnerabilities.
~ I promise you we will leave no stone unturned, and together, we will end this evil, and the powerful people behind this will be exposed and jailed. I give you my word.
~ To those families who have already lost a loved one at the hands of these criminals, I offer you not only my heartfelt condolences, but on behalf of all Malawians, I offer you my sincere apology. We have failed you as a nation, and you deserve better from all of us. But as for me, I guarantee you that HELP IS ON THE WAY.
Now before I and my colleagues take questions, may I ask you all to stand and observe a minute of silence for the young boy who has been taken from us, and to offer a silent prayer for God to watch over him and give us strength to stop this Satanic evil.
Issued in Lilongwe,
14th February, 2019.