KUCHING: Director of Department of Veterinary Services (DVS) Sarawak, Dr Adrian Susin Ambud has lodged a police report against a local daily for publishing news report accusing the department of drowning stray dogs rounded up in the fight against the spread of rabies yesterday.
Meanwhile, Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas slammed the local newspaper for carrying an unverified news report accusing the Sarawak government of animal cruelty in the fight against rabies.
I regret to read a news report that strays are drowned, as far as I know, there is SOP (standard operating procedure) for Veterinary Department to do targeted removal of strays. It does not involve drowning the dogs which is very inhumane. If such incident happened, we will take action against the perpetrator, he told The Borneo Post in an exclusive interview at his office.
To make sure that he gets the right information and be fair to the staff accused of carrying out the cruel acts, Uggah visited State Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory (SVDL) in Kota Samarahan together with the chief editor of the newspaper.
During the visit we invited the writer of the article to see for himself the situation at SVDL in Kota Samarahan, Uggah added.
Uggah said they were briefed by the officers on the SOP of targeted removal of strays and they were convinced that what was alleged is completely false.
There is no stray dog drowning as alleged by the writer. There is no evidence that any dog has been drowned, and there was no water tank as alleged in the news report. The only water tank in the premises is the water filter tank to supply clean water to the lab, he said.
Uggah emphasised to the public and all dog owners that the Veterinary Department of Sarawak observes a very strict protocol.
We would like to assure the public that the SOP will be adhered to. The Veterinary Department has never adopted such a cruel method to put dogs to sleep, he stressed.
Uggah regretted the newspaper’s publication of the unverified news that could be deemed as instigating animal lovers in the community.
We regret the newspaper’s action of publishing such an irresponsible report of unverified facts that can cause anger and anxiety among the people, especially dog owners, he said.
Source: SARAWAK GOVERNMENT