Revoked licences send a clear message

Posted on October 10, 2010. Filed under: Bio-diversity |

WWF-Malaysia welcomes the decision by the Natural Resources and Environment Ministry and the Department of Wildlife and National Parks (Perhilitan) to revoke the licences of wildlife trafficker Anson Wong and his wife Cheah Bing Shee (The Star, Oct 2).

The revocation of permits to keep and trade local and exotic wildlife for Wong’s two establishments in Penang was mooted by many concerned parties, including WWF-Malaysia, following Wong’s conviction last month.

We hope the move by the ministry will pre-empt any moves to promote wildlife trade under the guise of legality. Wong’s case also highlights the fact that action and enforcement to deter illegal wildlife trade should not just be a task for Perhilitan but that of other enforcement agencies, too.

It is crucial that other departments and agencies answer the ministry’s call for a more coordinated approach in tackling well-organised networks of wildlife criminals.

WWF-Malaysia is delighted that the ministry will bring into force the Wildlife Conservation Act 2010 (Act 716) by the end of the year. We anticipate the new Act, with tougher penalties, will have greater impact on the ground.

WWF-Malaysia hopes the revocation of permits from this world-renowned wildlife offender as well as the appeal filed by the Attorney General against the lenient sentence will send a clear message to other active wildlife offenders – illegal hunters and traders – that the Government is committed to taking stern action to safeguard our wildlife.

DATUK DR DIONYSIUS SHARMA,
Executive Director/CEO,
WWF-Malaysia.

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