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NGO: Consuming meat from protected wildlife all too common

 | October 17, 2017

Elizabeth John from NGO Traffic says markets which sell meat from exotic animals should be kept under constant surveillance.

trafficPETALING JAYA: A representative from a wildlife trade monitoring network today lamented the increasing consumption of meat from protected animals, saying more needs to be done to raise awareness on the issue.

Elizabeth John, who is a senior communications officer from NGO Traffic, said consumers need to be educated about the impact of this practice on wildlife.

“Sadly, the consumption of meat of protected wildlife is all too common throughout Malaysia,” she told FMT.

John was responding to a report by the Borneo Post on a visitor in Miri who had expressed her shock at seeing two barbecued civet cats and a chopped-up anteater for sale at a market, alongside live baby monkeys for RM300 each.

The visitor, who identified herself as Tan, said she and her husband were surprised that these animals, which are protected species, were being sold at the market without any action taken by the authorities.

She urged those responsible to take action on the matter, adding that without proper monitoring, there might not be any of these animals left in the future.

Speaking to FMT, John said such markets should be kept under constant surveillance by the authorities.

“Hopefully, monitoring and enforcement will improve once Sarawak’s new wildlife department has been set up,” she added.

“Traffic would also like to encourage more people to follow Tan’s example and report such instances of exotic meat trade. They can do so directly to the authorities or via the Wildlife Witness App.”

According to the report, Sarawak Forestry Corporation (SFC) deputy general manager (Protected Areas and Biodiversity Conservation Division) Oswald Braken Tisen has assured that action will be taken on the matter.

He added that anyone guilty of killing or keeping protected animals would be prosecuted.

Meanwhile, Natural Resources and Environment Minister Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said only limited action could be taken on his part as Sabah and Sarawak have their own laws and enforcement.

However, he said he had raised the issue with Abdul Kadir Abu Hashim, who is director-general of the Peninsular National Parks and Wildlife Department.

He added that a meeting would be held with SFC soon to discuss the matter.


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