Malaysia, Indonesia to collaborate in saving Sumatran rhino, says deputy minister

Tam, the last male Sumatran rhino, plays in mud in Sabah May 2014 in this picture obtained from social media on May 27, 2019. Tam passed away last Monday. — Reuters pic
Tam, the last male Sumatran rhino, plays in mud in Sabah May 2014 in this picture obtained from social media on May 27, 2019. Tam passed away last Monday. — Reuters pic

SHAH ALAM, June 1 — The governments of Malaysia and Indonesia will both work together to ensure the success of the Sumatran rhino breeding programme in order to save the species in Sabah.

Deputy Minister of Water, Land and Natural Resources Tengku Zulpuri Shah Raja Puji said the collaboration is expected to be carried out by the end of this year to save the rhinoceros species from extinction.

“The Sumatran rhinoceros in Malaysia today are no longer able to produce new offspring, so the government will try to save the species from extinction.

“We understand that there is only one Sumatran rhinoceros living in this country, so the government would need to spend for its care and upkeep,” he told reporters after opening the ‘World International Students Public Welfare Media Art Exhibiton 2019’ organised by Damansara Utama College (KDU) Glenmarie Campus, here today.

Last Monday, the last male Sumatran rhinoceros in Malaysia died because of old age and multiple organ failure. Its age was 35 years.

Tengku Zulpri said that the government is also working towards saving the Malayan tiger of which there are less than 200 in the country’s forests.

He said the Department of Wildlife and National Parks (Perhilitan) will also work with the Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) and the Malaysian Armed Forces (ATM) to stop illegal hunters and poachers from trespassing into forest reserves of the country

“We have launched Ops Belang to prevent hunters from capturing these and we will also work with the army and police to take part in the forest operations,” he said. — Bernama

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