Retail giant Pick n Pay has been roundly castigated for its recent act of segregation and stigmatisation after it recently barred a person living with albinism from entering the shop at its Masvingo branch.
Reports from Masvingo indicated that workers at Pick n Pay Masvingo recently barred Agnes Gurume from entering the supermarket after she asked to use soap and water to wash her hands as she argued that she was allergic to sanitisers.
Gurume was reportedly chased away by a till operator identified as William, an employee named Moses and a security guard who are workers at the branch.
The Zimbabwe Albino Association (ZIMAS) has since blasted Pick n Pay and it’s staffers for their ‘ignorant and blatant discrimination’.
In a statement, ZIMAS said the incident was a foul display of discrimination, adding that people with albinism are at high risk of cancer because their skin is sensitive to chemicals.
As a corporate entity, Pick n Pay has neither issued a public statement or apology over the incident which triggered international disgust and revulsion with Zimbabweans worldwide calling for closure of the supermarket.
“We are alarmed and disgusted by the ignorant and blatant discrimination demonstrated by one of the major retailers in Zimbabwe. It is no secret that people with albinism are at high risk of skin cancers and their skin is sensitive to many chemicals,” partly reads the statement released by ZIMAS to the Mirror.
“It is incomprehensible that one should be deprived of his civil liberties based on their disability. People with albinism and any other person with disability have the right to participate in all social and economic activities without prejudice,” said ZIMAS.
The association also expressed concern that Pick n Pay has not bothered to respond to an email that it sent to its management.
Albeit the outrage sparked by the incident, Pick n Pay, unlike many other outlets, continues to operate without soap and water at its entry points to allow those with sensitive skins to use.
Efforts to get a comment from Pick n Pay were futile.
additional reporting: Zwnews