Ms Emefa Akosua Adeti, Winner of 2012 Ghana Most Beautiful 6th Edition of the TV3 reality show has been unveiled by Ghana Association of Persons with Albinism (GAPA) as Goodwill Ambassador for Persons with Albinism in Ghana.
Emefa is to champion public education and awareness campaign against the stigmatization and discrimination of persons with albinism in the country and as well seek support from the co-operating world for their expenses.
Speaking at a ceremony to unveil the Albinism Ambassador, Executive Director of GAPA, Newton Katseku said, the aim is to demystify the public perception and outmoded culture believes that some Ghanaians held against albinism.
He said the Ambassador who liaise with members of the general public, educating and creating awareness that, persons with albinism has the equal right just as any other citizen and must be treated equally without discrimination in society.
Mr Katseku noted that many of their members in remote communities still faced with culture norma and values debarring them from certain places at particular time, posing their lives in danger.
According to the Executive Director of GAPA, some of them have suffered customary banishment in communities contrary to the 1992 constitution that guaranteed freedom of movement.
He indicated that the Association continues to receive reports about discrimination of children and adults born with the condition by schools, churches, communities and other public places.
He explained that the peculiar eye and skin defects that all persons with albinism face made it very imperative to access basic health care policies in the country.
Citing recent development, Mr Katseku said, members of the Association went to Akwamufie community in the Eastern region as part of their outreach programmes to create awareness but were stopped by the residents from entering the town in the presence of police officers who accompanied them.
In her remarks, Ms Emefa Adeti expressed her determination to increase the safety and self-esteem of persons with albinism and create awareness throughout the country.
She promised to take her awareness creation to schools, churches, social gathering and on social media to the world that albinism is neither spiritual nor sickness but a medical condition born out of human generic.
Emefa described the continued false beliefs and superstitions around albinism as “Societal Failure” and vowed to push for an end to discrimination and inhumane treatment meted against persons with albinism.
She explained that she has encountered some of the discrimination against Albinism persona in schools and another social gathering across the country but noted she would lead a sensitisation program in communities to sensitise those wrongful beliefs of the inherited genetic condition.
In other parts of Africa, especially Tanzania and Uganda, people with Albinism are often persecuted, dismembered and even killed because of false beliefs and superstitions about them.
These superstitions are often perpetuated by witch doctors with erroneous beliefs that certain body parts of albinism persons contain magical powers.