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Wednesday, July 24, 2024
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Senator Shiri commemorates Albinism Awareness Day

By Grace Amana

Senator Annah Shiri has emphasized the imperative need to promote the rights of people with albinism in society.

The sentiments were raised during the international Albinism Awareness Day commemorations which ran under the theme “10 years of IAAD: A Decade of Collective Progress,” signifying a decade of global efforts to advance the rights and well-being of individuals with albinism.

Senator Annah Shiri, a passionate advocate for the rights of people with disabilities highlighted the ongoing process of domesticating the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) through the gazetting of the Persons with Disabilities bill, with a deliberate focus on the inclusion of people with albinism in the definition of disability.

This inclusion aims to rectify historical imbalances and ensure that individuals with albinism are not excluded from disability programs and laws.

Furthermore, Senator Shiri praised the recent ratification of the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities by the National Assembly. This ratification is a crucial step in protecting people with albinism from inhumane and degrading treatment, as well as from targeted attacks based on unfounded beliefs.

It underscores the government’s commitment to addressing challenges and formulating mitigation strategies to ensure that individuals with albinism can operate on an equal level with others.

However, despite these advancements, Senator Shiri also highlighted the ongoing challenges faced by people with albinism, including the impact of climate change leading to an increase in skin cancer cases and the high cost of cancer treatment.

Additionally, the senator emphasized the exorbitant cost of sunscreen lotions, with no subsidies available to facilitate access for individuals with albinism.

The theme of this year’s commemoration calls for collaborative efforts from the government, development partners, and organizations representing people with albinism to develop sustainable initiatives and programs addressing the challenges that hinder the enjoyment of rights by individuals with albinism, thereby limiting their potential.

Senator Shiri stressed the need for individuals with albinism to work alongside the broader constituency of persons with disabilities in advocating for progressive laws, policies, and responsive budgetary allocations that recognize the complexities they face.

In her message from the Senator’s desk, Senator Annah Shiri expressed her determination to promote and champion the rights of people with albinism, extending her wishes for a “Happy Albinism Awareness Day.”

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