In a unified effort, the Department of Women, Youth, and Persons with Disabilities, partnering with the National Albinism Task Force of South Africa (NATF), emphatically advocates against discrimination, hostility, and violence towards individuals with albinism.
Amidst anticipation of South African traditional healer Bongolethu “Dr Khehlelezi” Mzozo’s court appearance, the call resonates. Dr Khehlelezi faces legal action due to a YouTube video, circulated in April 2023, disseminating false information about individuals with albinism.
In adherence to Section 20 of the Promotion of Equality and Prevention of Unfair Discrimination Act 2000 (PEPUDA) (No 4, 2000), the Thembisilemadlala Albinism Foundation, supported by NATF, has initiated proceedings in the Equality Court. Their contention asserts that the video propagates discrimination and constitutes “hate speech” against those with albinism.
While the ongoing case involving Khehlelezi is critical, the department emphasizes a broader imperative: combatting discrimination and hate speech directed at individuals with albinism.
Highlighting the approach, the department acknowledges the collaboration between NATF and KwaZulu-Natal Sport, Arts, and Culture. Together, they aim to engage stakeholders in discussions, striving to develop a National Safety Plan dedicated to safeguarding Persons with Albinism.
Intensifying efforts, the department has initiated collaborative steps with NATF and the Department of Sport, Arts, and Culture (KZN). They have commenced the Social Cohesion Community Outreach program, an inaugural initiative facilitating dialogues that aim to illuminate and address traditional misconceptions and practices fostering stigma, discrimination, and persecution of individuals with albinism.
Simultaneously, individuals with albinism and affiliated organizations are convening today at Gandhi Park in Verulam, KwaZulu-Natal. Their purpose: continue the Equality Court case against Mzozo at the Verulam Magistrate Court.
This unified stance symbolizes a pivotal step towards eradicating prejudice, fostering awareness, and securing justice for individuals with albinism in South Africa.