Jewish Journal

Witch doctors promote hunting black albinos

by Brad A. Greenberg

October 16, 2008 | 3:36 pm

Crazy witch doctors in Burundi are under the impression that albino arms—that’s from people, not alligators—are more valuable than ivory, leading to human hunting. The following story reads more like a news report from a really, really, really bad horror screenplay than from the Agence France-Presse:

Richard Ciza was alerted by neighbours last week that a posse was looking for him. He ran and hid for two days in the forest of eastern Burundi.

The 19-year-old is an albino and knows exactly the kind of death he would have suffered if the marauding horde had caught up with him.

“Some neighbours came to warn me that a group of killers was after me and so I ran like the wind, completely terrified,” said Ciza who lives in Ruyigi province.

In recent weeks, Ruyigi has seen a gruesome string of murders and mutilations of albinos, whose body parts are sold to witch doctors.

“People say that the body parts taken from albinos are sold in Tanzania. They put them on gold mines and that brings the gold to the surface, then you just need to collect it,” said Ciza, fear evident in his pale blue eyes.

“Some fishermen also use the parts to bait large fish they think have gold in their bellies.”

No joke. Read the rest here. Ciza and others are in hiding, holed up in a government officials house. I wouldn’t want to be there when the albino poachers discovered which residence.

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