Home Albinism News Persons with Albinism Cry Out Against Alleged Stigmatisation In Akwa Ibom

Persons with Albinism Cry Out Against Alleged Stigmatisation In Akwa Ibom

by Inclusive News Network

Albinism Association of Nigeria has cried out to government and individuals to stop all forms of discrimination against them, as they are normal humans with the capacity to add value to national development.

The association sent out the outcry while hosting the 2022 World Albinism Day in the open, having been denied access to both public and private facilities by the Akwa Ibom state government.

A report gathers a protracted drama as Akwa Ibom State Ministry of Women Affairs lock horns with the Albinism Association of Nigeria in a show of supremacy on Monday morning.

Recall that the state government had before the rampage ordered that the International Albinism Awareness Day (IAAD) observed globally by Persons with Albinism on every June 13th, be cancelled in Akwa Ibom state this year “for security reasons”.

To ensure the directive was enforced, the state government ordered security agencies to prevent the event from being marked at Women Development Centre (WDC), a government facility along the Ibrahim Babangida Way, Uyo.

The Commissioner for Women Affairs, Dr. Ini Adiakpan, in a statement on behalf of the state government had explained that the cancellation of the event became necessary following series of petitions and protests by aggrieved members against the Albinism Association of Nigeria led by its President, Comrade Jake Epele.

She, therefore, order security agencies to bar the Albinos from using the government complex to stage the event.

Determined to mark the day despite state government’s resistance, the Albinism Association of Nigeria led by its President, Comrade Jake Epele decided to use Breakfort Hotel as venue for the event. The move was again resisted as the Women Affairs Ministry led security operatives to seal the venue.

Undeterred, Epele and his group defied the order and moved the programme to an open arena at the Aka Road roundabout, where they ventilate their sentiments and drew sympathy to their plights.

Under the theme: “Uniting in making our voices heard”, Epele, founder of the group, rallied international community to the problems of “stigmatisation and discrimination against people with skin pigmentation”, and stressed the need for equal treatment and effective social integration In the society.

“We are not disabled, we are able and can work in any capacity, no one should judge us by our skin colour, by what we can do”, Epele stressed.

Contacted to give an account of the day’s faceoff between government and the association, the state Commissioner for Women Affairs, Dr Ini Adiakpan said “This has been sorted out. We had observed same at the Women Development Center”, a response some interpreted to indicate an existence of factions within the association.

The Independent

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