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Musician fights for justice for Africans with albinism

3 min read

Good Stuff
Musician fights for justice for Africans with albinism
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Many Africans born with albinism suffer incredible injustice. Malian musician Salif Keita fights to change this.

Albinism in Africa: white Skin, black Blood

About one in 13,000 babies in the world are born with albinism. In Africa, the ratio is as high as 1 in 1,000 babies. Unfortunately, albinos in many African nations are simply killed due to superstition and ignorance about the skin condition that is caused by a complete lack of pigmentation, or more simply said, they die "because they are black people who have white skin" said Mr. Keita,"whether it’s due to discrimination or the hot sun, they are in perpetual danger."

The Salif Keita Global Foundation develops media campaigns that positively portray those with albinism The descendant of warrior princes, the son of two black African parents, Afro-pop pioneer Salif Keita was born “white”. Inheriting albinism, Keita instantly stood out among other Africans and stood up for tolerance in all forms. Source: Facebook/BrightVibesAfrica

The “Golden Voice of Africa”, Salif Keita was born with albinism

Salif Keita, from Mali, is one of the most influential musicians on the African continent. Known as the “Golden Voice of Africa”, Mr. Keita was born with albinism. In 2005, he founded the Salif Keita Global Foundation to raise awareness of the condition. His award-winning album La Différence was dedicated to ending violations of the rights of persons with albinism across the world. 

The condition is often misinterpreted as an ill omen in his native Mali, making Keita an outcast in his own community. Society, including public schools in Mali, perpetuates harmful beliefs about people with albinism who are often shunned, ridiculed, and even killed for ritual practices.

WHAT IS ALBINISM?

al·bi·nism: Albinism is a defect of melanin production that results in little or no colour (pigment) in the skin, hair, and eyes in varying degrees. It is often a major contributing factor to skin cancer in all races.

Since 2001, this charity has tirelessly worked to erase the stigma attached to people with albinism in Africa, and provide care and assistance to those in need of refuge and medical attention, including protection from the sun. Keita knows its dangers first hand, having lost his sister to skin cancer in the 1990s. In recent years, Keita has donated proceeds from record sales and tours to purchase sunscreen for Africans in need, and build a school and health clinic in Bamako.
Keita knows its dangers first hand, having lost his sister to skin cancer in the 1990s. Since 2001, this charity has tirelessly worked to erase the stigma attached to people with albinism in Africa, and provide care and assistance to those in need of refuge and medical attention, including protection from the sun. Keita knows its dangers first hand, having lost his sister to skin cancer in the 1990s. In recent years, Keita has donated proceeds from record sales and tours to purchase sunscreen for Africans in need, and build a school and health clinic in Bamako. Source: afrizap.com

Albino: A Living Being In Need Of Safety


The US-based non-profit organisation brings media attention to the global plight of people with albinism, has advocacy for their rights and social integration, and raises funds to provide them with free healthcare and educational services in the US, Africa and around the world. The organization is headed by Mr. Keita’s Malian-American wife, journalist and activist, Coumba Makalou Keita. Mrs.Keita believes that albinism is "a truly beautiful trait that the entire world needs to celebrate with love and acceptance."

Under her guidance, SKGF has launched a campaign called "Stop A.L.B.I.N.O.S. Genocide Now!" which uses the acronym to redefine the term ‘albinos‘ to simply mean ‘A Living Being In Need Of Safety™’ to bring a new meaning to the often negatively used term."It’s a sad thought to know that a human being because of their color or lack thereof, considered Albinos in Africa and around the world, have to continue in our lifetime to endure persecution, social isolation, murder, human rights violations, denial of fair access to education, as well as to healthcare and employment", said Mrs.Keita. "It is a collective human duty to create global awareness and advocacy and speak out against these grave crimes against humanity, or else we are all guilty in one way or another of supporting hatred, discrimination and genocide".

“The love of a mother” “We are all human, there’s no race or colour. We are all the same”. In recent years, Keita has donated proceeds from record sales and tours to purchase sunscreen for Africans in need, and build a school and health clinic in Bamako. Source: Facebook/SalifKeitaFan/A.Gourgel
Make an Impact

Donate Now To The Salif Keita Global Foundation

The Salif Keita Global Foundation distributes thousands of tubes of sunscreen, hats, sunscreen, sunglasses, and protective clothing per year at NO COST TO ALBINOS, and provides free medical treatment for those with skin lesions and tumors in Mali plus other free services. To make a donation or for more information how to make a donation, please click headline above. All donations are tax-deductible. The Salif Keita Global Foundation is a US Federal 501 c 3 tax exempt charity organisation!