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Tuesday, 19 August 2014 - 13:13
CID likely to take up investigation on Elephant poaching

UNP Sabaragamuwa Provincial Councillor Heshan Withanage says he is ready to take action against the country’s wild elephant poachers.

He said he would complain to CID as well as the Commission to investigate Bribery or Corruption against the culprits who capture and keep the animals in their possession.

Provincial Councillor Withanage said either the Chief Minister or any other responsible official should answer to his exposure before the 26th of this month.

The details of the exposure were tabled by Withanage during the council sessions on the last 12 of this month.

The Provincial Councillor also tabled a copy of another report which was submitted by Deputy Auditor General A.H.M.L. Ambanwala to the Wildlife Ministry Secretary.

Copies of the same report have been referred to a Wildlife Ministry consultant, the Secretary to President, the Wildlife Department’s Director General and the State Account Department’s Director General.

The report has been issued on 22nd of July, 2014 and a request has also been made to answer the report on or before 5th of August.

However nature protection activists groups including the Environment Trust point out the officer who prepared the controversial report has been removed from the job before the ultimatum - August 5th.

Details of 4 elephants calves kept illegally by various persons are included in the auditor general’s report.

However Director of the Environment Trust Sajeeva Chamikara said he disclosed details about 23 elephant calves being kept illegally by various persons in mid 2013.

He said another 15 heads of animals have been added to that number during the last several months.

Sabaragamuwa PC member Heshan Withanage said the relevant factions with powerful political clout should be held responsible for this illegal business.

Meanwhile our news team contacted Wildlife Resources Conservation Minister Vijith Vijayamuni Soyza.

He said he was not able to study the particular report as yet, and asked us to contact his ministry secretary or wildlife director general with regard to that matter.

Later we attempted to contact the wildlife ministry secretary as well as wildlife director general.

Unfortunately our attempt was futile as both the wildlife ministry secretary and the wildlife director general did not answer the calls.

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