By Rathindra Kuruwita
Police are not doing enough to protect the black tortoise (gal ibba) and the flapshell tortoise (kiri ibba) being slaughtered for the consumption of Chinese construction workers and tourists, says Sajeewa Chamikara of the Movement for Land and Agricultural Reform (MONLAR).
“Organised groups are collecting these two protected species as there is a high demand for them from Chinese construction workers and tourists. According to the Fauna and Flora Protection Ordinance (FFPO) anyone who harms these animals can be fined and jailed. Moreover the Police don’t need a warrant to arrest such a person.”
However, it is the Department of Wildlife officials who carry out most of the raids, in areas near construction sites with Chinese workers.