KOTA KINABALU, Oct 2 — The Sabah government today lauded the swift action of the police and the Sabah Wildlife Department (SWD) in arresting six men suspected of brutally killing a male adult pygmy elephant in Kalabakan, Tawau, recently.
Sabah Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Christina Liew who is also the state Tourism, Culture and Environment minister expressed the hope that with the arrests conducted today, the authorities could conclude their investigations as soon as possible, and institute court proceedings.
“Congratulations and thank you, especially to Tawau District Police chief ACP Peter Umbuas and team, and the Tawau Wildlife Office,” she said in a statement.
Liew also expressed appreciation for the efforts of informers who had provided accurate information to the authorities, which led to the arrests.
She called on parties who had pledged rewards for information, to honour their pledges – the bounty stands at RM30,000, and comprises RM10,000 pledged by Orangutan Appeal UK, RM10,000 from the SWD and RM10,000 from a voluntary body.
On Sept 25, a group of anglers discovered the carcass of an elephant, with its tusks removed, at the Sungai Udin riverbank and shared some photos on social media, prompting investigations by the SWD.
A post-mortem revealed that the endangered animal had suffered 70 gunshot wounds on its body.