Albinos have always been victims of occult beliefs. It is said for example that albino people’s hair has mystical powers. “When I was a child, they used to tell us that their hair brings luck; particularly to traders; after rituals and incantations”, confides a woman in her fifties, from the Western region of the country. Prejudices which set members of associations defending albinos such as the Association of Albino Women of Cameroon (AFAC) on the warpath. Even though mindsets are changing, myths on albino people still endure.
“In the traditional mythology, everything out of the ordinary is considered mystical”, explains a member of a traditional Bamiléké secret society. “People believe that some parts of our body possess miraculous properties; that they can bring wealth, help in winning an election or be used in love potions”, regrets Stefan on the website Observateurs de France 24.
Stefan is a Cameroonian albino who has been granted humanitarian asylum following discriminations he was victim of due his albino status.