PM to be asked to probe poisoning of a Siberian tiger in Ubon Ratchathani zoo

Activist Srisuwan Janya plans to lodge a petition with Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, demanding an investigation into the alleged fatal poisoning of a Siberian tiger at the Ubon Ratchathani’s zoo.

Mr Srisuwan accused the director of Ubon Ratchathani zoo, the director and board of the Zoological Organization of dereliction of duty for allowing the rare Siberian tiger to be poisoned, for procrastinating in the investigation of the case and for covering up the case.

He suspected the perpetrators killed the tiger to take their skin and other organs for sale.

According to Mr Srisuwan, the Siberian tiger or Amur tiger was imported to the zoo in Ubon Ratchathani for study and for public display. However, on the night of April 13 last year, the big cat was found dead after having eaten meat which was later found to be laced with Carbofuran, a very toxic pesticide.

Until now, Mr Srisuwan said, not a single officials from the Ubon Ratchathani zoo has come out to give an explanation about the tiger’s death.

The incident, he said, was a clear indication of utter incompetency of the zoo’s director in Ubon Ratchathani for allowing the animal to be poisoned.

The activist noted that the tiger was a public property bought with taxpayers’ money and, hence, it should be the responsibility of the officials concerned to probe the incident and try to locate the perpetrators for legal action.

However, the zoo director, Mr Wanchai Tanwattana, broke his silence on Sunday (Feb 4), saying that police had issued warrants for the arrest of three zoo officials for alleged involvement in the poisoning of the tiger and in the theft of tiger skin and skull from animal hospital at the zoo.

The three officials were identified as Prawit Thongbai, Wanchai Taethaisong and Surachai Kwamsawat.

Source: Thai Public Broadcasting Service (Thai PBS)

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