THE Swaziland Epilepsy Association has warned that cases of abduction of epileptic people always increased during elections.
Swaziland is going to the polls this year, and according to previous statistics, cases of abduction and ritual murders increase during the period.
Mbuso Mahlalela from the association said it was common that during the time of elections, the vulnerable were targeted and abducted.
He warned that people who were known to suffer from the illness should be taken care of, particularly during the time of elections.
Mahlalela revealed that according to statistics, cases of abduction showed that a considerable number of people targeted were in fact epileptic or had some form of disability.
“It doesn’t matter whether a person is young or old, they need to be guarded as they become targets,” said Mahlalela.
Mahlalela was speaking after a report by this publication that a 13-year-old epileptic boy might have been abducted for ritual purposes.
Khanyakwezwe Zwane has been missing since the 24th of January and his grandmother, Monica Zwane said the family had been looking for him to no avail. Whilst he hoped that the boy could soon be found, Mahlalela said that if he was abducted, the alleged assailants might have taken advantage of his medical condition.
Mahlalela also warned that many other forms of abuse were inflicted on epileptic people including rape.
Referring to a particular situation, Mahlalela said some were raped while they were experiencing seizure.
He further said if the epileptic were not guarded properly, they were also prone to accidents.
“It’s not enough to leave them with other children and assume they are playing. You need to constantly watch them,” said Mahlalela.
He further said the yellow campaign currently going on would help improve awareness of the illness.
Mahlalela urged that people should be curious when they see a child walking on his own, especially if they notice that he had a mental disability.