27 C
Kota Kinabalu
Ahad, April 21, 2024

Probe serving of turtle eggs on dining-table, says Liew

Photo shows the damaged reef (foreground) off Mabul Island.

KOTA KINABALU: The GRS State Government must take a serious view of the serving of turtle eggs on a dining-table, which has gone viral on social media.

Making the call, former State Minister of Tourism, Culture and Environment, Datuk Christina Liew said it was incumbent upon the current Minister to get the relevant authorities to investigate how a plate of turtle eggs had ended up on the dining-table.

“I am surprised to see the turtle eggs being served because we have always reminded the people to comply with the laws of conservation.

“Personally, I am very disappointed as turtles and their products (example, eggs) are protected under the Wildlife Conservation Enactment 1997. During my short tenure, one of our priorities was the strong emphasis on protection of turtles which are among Sabah’s key tourist attractions ,” she said in a statement on Friday.

According to a turtle conservationist, he had been striving for 25 years to preserve the turtle population with assistance from the Sabah Parks.

Liew, who is also Tawau MP cum Api Api Assemblywoman, also expressed sadness over the alleged destruction of the reef near Mabul Island off the east coast of Sabah.

“I have received feedback from tourism players and environmentalists who are dismayed over the unfortunate incident. They have spent years protecting this creation of nature, only to be demolished by irresponsible humanity.”This state of affairs warrants an explanation from the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Environment, which is entrusted with the responsibility of conserving the State’s precious natural heritage,” she said.

On the ‘shock’ case involving the presence of a rare shark in a tank at a restaurant (which has surfaced online), Liew said it does not bode well for the image of the Government if there is no law enforceability.

“I urge the Fisheries Department to get down to the root of the issue. I understand that this species of shark (known as zebra or leopard shark) is listed as ‘Endangered’ on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of species at risk of extinction,” she said.