Petition against exporting monkeys to China to be heard on May 26



The writ petition filed by animal rights organisations and animal rights activists challenging the proposed capture and exportation of 100,000 Toque Macaque monkeys to China was fixed for May 26 by the Court of Appeal.When the matter came up before the Court of Appeal two-judge-bench comprising Justices Nissanka Bandula Karunaratne and M.A.R. Marikkar, the Attorney General sought a further date to present facts on behalf of the respondents.

President’s Counsel Sanjeeva Jayawardena appeared for the petitioners.

Minister of Agriculture Mahinda Amaraweera had recently publicly announced that the Government is considering a request by the Chinese Government to export 100,000 Toque Macaque Monkeys, which are endemic to Sri Lanka, to China ostensibly for display at Chinese zoos.

Wildlife and Nature Protection Society of Sri Lanka, Rally for Animal Rights & Environment, Justice for Animals, Rescue Animals Sri Lanka, animal welfare advocate Otara Gunewardene, Ven. Matara Ananda Sagara Thero, Rukshan Amal Jayewardene, Sonali Fernando, Iromi Ahilya Salgado, Dumindra Rajitha Ratnayaka, Sharadha Manorama de Saram, Stefanie Wege – Aluwihare, Pushpadeva Dharmawardena, Randika Prabodha Fernando, Christine Bianca Shivanthi Perera, Tara Dilkushi Wickramanayake, Bandula Pathmasiri Panapitiya, Rushika Nadiya De Lanerolle, Jayamaha Mudalige Don Irangani, Wijenayake Pathiranage Wipulasena, Thanthirige Pasidu Nirosh, Vimukthi Buddika, Hiruni Maleesha Gunawardene, Iraki Lankika Kodithuwakku, Shanthi Wickramanayake, Chandani Perera, Shashi Udeni Perera, Umanga Hyacinth, Manoja Jayaswini Weerakkody and M.S. Chandrabosh filed this petition challenging the Minister’s decision to export 100,000 monkeys to China. 

The petitioners stated that there are three recognized subspecies of the endemic toque macaque: the dry zone toque macaque (M.s. sinica), wet zone toque macaque (M.s. aurifrons) and highland toque macaque (M.s. opisthomelas) in Sri Lanka. The 1977 survey estimated there were 439,000 macaques in the dry zone, 150,000 in the lowland wet zone and 1,500 individuals of the montane subspecies.

The petitioners are seeking an order in the nature of Writ of Certiorari, quashing any decisions of the respondents from approving or permitting the exportation of Toque macaque monkeys of Sri Lanka to China.

The petitioners maintained that the Sri Lankan wildlife is protected under the provisions of the Fauna and Flora Protection Ordinance (FFPO) No. 02 of 1937 and under Section 40 of the FFPO, provides that no person shall export any mammal, bird, reptile, amphibian, fish, coral or invertebrate whether dead or alive, except under the authority of a permit issued in the prescribed form obtained from the prescribed officer on payment of the prescribed fee.

The petitioners further said such permit shall not be issued except for the promotion of scientific knowledge including supplies to foreign museums, foreign zoological gardens in exchange for supplies to local museums or local zoological gardens.



Exit mobile version