PETALING JAYA: Malaysia needs to find effective solutions to counter threats to the environment as it moves to become a developed nation, says social activist Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye.
He said public education and awareness campaigns need to be ramped up to stop the country from losing more of its wildlife to poaching, the illegal wildlife trade and deforestation as well as road accidents.
“Wildlife species have been declining, even in protected areas, due to poaching and illegal deforestation. We should not allow more species to face the same fate as the Sumatran rhino, which is already extinct in the wild.
“For the laws to succeed, there must be public education and awareness efforts to encourage the public to fight against wildlife exploitation and appreciate their existence,” he said.
Lee was referring to The Star’s reports on the Wildlife and National Parks Department’s (Perhilitan) proposed amendments to the Wildlife Conservation (Hunting Prohibited Areas) Order 2013 and Wildlife Conservation (Open Season, Methods and Times of Hunting) Order 2014 which aimed to cut down open season hunting for wild boars in order to protect other threatened wildlife such as tigers.
Lee said this was in line with the government’s decision to amend the Wildlife Conservation Act to imprison poachers for more than 10 years and fine them up to RM5mil in an effort to curb rampant poaching.