PBDS backs call to allow only natives, Dayaks to trade in bush meat

Bobby William

KUCHING, Nov 25: Parti Bansa Dayak Sarawak (PBDS) today expressed its support to Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS)’s leaders’ proposal for the Sarawak Wild Protection Ordinance 1998 be amended to ensure that only natives and Dayaks are allowed to trade in wild game.

Its president Bobby William said, added that it also supported PRS in urging the state government to amend the ordinance to allow the sale of wild boar meat in markets throughout the state.

“We are supporting PRS on the said issue to ensure that only native and Dayaka are allow to sell jungle produce. As such we call on the State Government to amend the Wild Life Protection Ordinance,1998,” Bobby told DayakDaily today.

Additionally, Bobby also urged the Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) government to upgrade Dayak markets where Dayak food can be sold.

“Dayak businesses such ‘rumah asap’ (smokehouse) should be upgraded as well so that it could support the Dayaks especially during this Covid-19 pandemic,” he said.

Bobby was commenting on PRS president Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing and the party’s vice-president Datuk Liwan Lagang who have suggested that the current Wild Life Protection Ordinance, 1998, must be amended to allow natives to sell wildlife especially wild boar meat to supplement their income.

Masing had said it is high time for the State government to amend the said ordinance as the natives have been deprived of earning extra income from the sale of wild boar meat in the open market.

“Yes, we have voiced out our concerns of the natives who have been barred to sell wildlife especially wild boar meat in the open market all this while,” Masing told DayakDaily yesterday.

He stressed that presently, there has been no definite data from SFC showing the hunting by native communities of wild boars that resulted in its drastic decline.

As a native himself, Masing said, wild game including wild boar is a major source of protein intake and another source of income for the native communities, especially during the economic slowdown due to Covid-19.

He also highlighted the fact that one of the reasons for the decline of wild boars’ population is illegal hunting by non-natives.

Meanwhile, today Masing said, when the said ordinance be amended, it must be comprehensive enough to provide delicate balance between the conservation of wildlife and the people’s welfare.

He said this would include all wildlife in Sarawak including exotic fish species such as empurau and semah. – DayakDaily