Baby orang-utan’s death comes under microscope

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Minister of Wildlife and Wildlife Conservation, Wimalaweera Dissanayake has launched a scientific and independent investigation into the death of a baby orang-utan at the Dehiwala Zoo on 22 April.

This is the second orang-utan death in less than four months, following the death of the mother orang-utan in December 2021.

However, Dissanayake said the animal handler had been suspended until investigations were complete.

The Minister was awaiting an interim report on the mysterious death of the animal this week.

Many animal rights activists urged an impartial investigation into the mysterious death as well as immediate action against keeping these animals in such a dangerous place and to care for them properly.

They noted that to prevent similar incidents from occurring in the future, the perpetrators should be punished.

Rally for Animal Rights (RARE) Spokesperson Panchali Panapitiya said the veterinarian and the Committee in charge of deciding at what stage animals could be displayed to the public should be held accountable because the baby was clearly not mature enough to care for itself.

“We hope all responsible parties are dealt with immediately and an impartial investigation is conducted and that justice is served. If they fail to do so, we will go to Court to seek justice,” the statement said.

BY Thameenah Razeek