KUALA LUMPUR: Zoo Negara has received close to RM12mil in donations and sponsorships from individuals, the private sector and government agencies within the past year.
Its deputy president Rosly @ Rahmat Amat Lana said the donations were used for the upkeep of the zoo, which had been affected by the various levels of the movement control order.
The largest donation was RM1.3mil from the Water, Land and Natural Resources Ministry.
Altogether, the zoo received RM11.6mil in donations from January last year to this January.
Rosly said they were grateful that the zoo would be allowed to reopen tomorrow.
The zoo has faced financial difficulties following MCO 2.0 when it was closed to the public for seven weeks.
Last year, the zoo was shut for 21 weeks because of the MCO.
Rosly said they had to dip into their reserve funds for staff salaries, as well as food and medication for the animals.
He said their usual income from gate receipts and rental of kiosks was about RM1mil a month, with the amount just “breaking even’’ in covering their operating costs.
He believed based on past experiences that there would be a good response to the reopening of the zoo, especially since there would be a 20% discount on the first day.
“We were worried that the zoo would remain closed until April, so we are very grateful that we have been allowed to operate, ” he said at a press conference yesterday.
Rosly added that they would be allowed to operate at 50% of their capacity, or between 5,000 and 7,000 visitors during its peak.
“We have a 5km walking track, so we are confident of being able to have about 2,500 visitors, ” he said.
He also said several fish species were released into the Tunku Abdul Rahman lake which was purchased with the donations received.