By Azania Post Reporter
THE Special Seats legislator Mgeni Kadika (CUF) has asked the Tanzanian government to remove tax imposed on skin lotion for People Living With Albinism (PLWA) in order to enable them avoid cancer .
The MP was asking the government in a parliament today in Dodoma where she said skin lotion plays a crucial role in the fight against cancer.
“We ask the government to remove tax on skin lotion to enable PLWA get it at affordable price ,” she said.
Responding the deputy Minister in Prime Minister's Office responsible for Disabled persons , Stella Alex Ikupa , said already the government has removed such tax.
She said the government understand various challenges facing people with albinism and has been working on it.
Deputy Mnister Ikupa directed all District Executive Directors (DED) in the country to list skin lotion on their orders when they purchase drugs from Medical Stores Department (MSD).
On her part, Suzan Lyimo, a special seats legislator (Chadema) asked the government to increase security in protecting people with albinism.
She said they have been killed due to witchcraft belief, hence more tough measures should be taken against culprits.
Skin cancer is a major risk associated with albinism and is thought to be a major cause of death of albinos in Tanzania since many of them are not aware of the danger from the sun and how to protect themselves.
Apart from the skin challenges they have, they also have the low vision problem due to the lack of pigment in their eyes. The project will provide albinos with sunscreen lotion, sunglasses, wide-brimmed hat, monocular telescope and log sleeved clothes to protect persons with albinism.
Lack of protective sunscreen lotion, wide brimmed hats and proper clothing resulting in epidemic rates of death due to preventable skin cancer, additionally the lack of glasses, monocular telescope, protective sunglasses and magnifiers results in extreme difficulty in completing educational programs, resulting in chronic poverty and unemployment among people with albinism in Tanzania.
Officially, 156 have been attacked, mutilated or killed in the country since 2006. The actual number is thought to be significantly higher because many attacks are not reported.