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Bung is  saddened  by deaths  of pygmy  elephants 
Published on: Sunday, November 10, 2019
By: FMT
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KOTA KINABALU: Kinabatangan MP Datuk Bung Moktar Radin (pic) is concerned that Sabah, especially his constituency, is getting a bad rap due to the spate of elephant deaths in the State.

Four Borneo pygmy elephants died in the last five weeks in the east coast, with one occurring in Kinabatangan last Sunday. The carcass was found floating in the Kinabatangan River, its front toes apparently cut off.

Bung, who has a reputation for controversial remarks, especially in Parliament, was saddened by the deaths, saying the killings had been going on for decades.

He said there would be no end to the problem if the elephant-human conflict dilemma was not addressed properly.

He said while he was worried about the rate of elephant deaths and killings, he also sympathised with villagers in his constituency, such as those in Kampung Bilit, Kampung Sukau and Kampung Abai whose crops were always targeted by elephants.

“Sometimes, a herd of 60 to 100 elephants would attack at the same time. You can imagine the anger if the crops are your only source of income and they are destroyed.

“But I always tell the villagers not to surrender to their emotions to the extent of harming the elephants. These animals do not know any better,” he told FMT.

Bung said the elephants were being pushed out from their natural habitats to look for food elsewhere because of the fast-depleting resources in the forest.

Among the factors for the jump in elephant deaths was the opening of vast lands for oil palm plantations, he said.

As such, the Sabah Umno Chief urged the State Government, through the Sabah Wildlife Department, to look for a “solid solution”, adding the situation could spiral out of control if no viable answer was found soon.



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