KOTA KINABALU: A probe into how turtle eggs were served at a Sandakan dinner attended by Rural Development and Regional Minister Datuk Ismail Sabri Yaakob in late August is in full swing.
Sabah Wildlife Department director William Baya said the investigation into the incident were ongoing.
He however declined to comment further when asked if the operator of the seafood restaurant where the dinner was held on Aug 29 had been questioned.
Photographs of the event show Ismail Sabri at the restaurant on Aug 29 with Beluran Umno chief Datuk James Ratib seated next to him.
On the table just in front of them is a plate of at least two dozen turtle eggs.
Turtles were deemed a totally protected species under the under Sabah Wildlife Enactment 1997.
It is an offence to harvest, sell or consume the creatures or products such as their eggs.
Offenders are liable to a RM50,000 fine, five years imprisonment or both if found guilty.
Photographs of the dinner have gone viral on Facebook and social networks sparking an outcry among conservationists here.
On Thursday, Ismail Sabri said he did not consume the turtle eggs due to health issues.