Animal rights lawyer Rajesh Nagarajan says his team had no choice but to file a suit against the board after it refused to disclose its activities to them, citing the Official Secrets Act 1972.
PETALING JAYA: The Kuala Lumpur High Court has ordered the Animal Welfare Board to reveal its activities since its formation seven years ago.
Animal rights lawyer Rajesh Nagarajan said the High Court allowed his application for discovery and had instructed the board to file an affidavit and provide an activity report detailing its work since its formation.
Rajesh said he and his team had filed the discovery suit against the board after it refused to disclose its activities to them. The board, he said, had stated that everything it had done was under the Official Secrets Act 1972.
“Our contention is that in the past seven years, the animal welfare board had failed to execute its duties. This is why we are asking the board to prove that it has done its job,” he told FMT.
The Animal Welfare Board is a statutory body under Parliament, established under Section 4 of the Animal Welfare Act 2015. It is tasked with monitoring establishments, providing education on and promoting animal welfare, as well as advising ministries on matters relating to animal welfare.
In welcoming the High Court’s decision, Rajesh said it was worrying that little was known about the board.
He was confident the truth about the board’s activities or lack of activities would finally come to light and that this might result in better protection for animals in Malaysia.