Zoo animals starve as economic crisis worsens; Minister promises funds

By Ifham Nizam

Animals at the National Zoological Gardens in Dehiwela cannot be fed properly for want of funds. official complain.

Agriculture, Wildlife and Wildlife Conservation Minister Mahinda Amaraweera yesterday said that steps would be taken, in consultation with the Treasury to provide the relevant financial allocations soon.

Amaraweera said that according to officials of the Department of Zoological Gardens they had no money to provide daily food to animals at the Dehiwala Zoo and other zoos.

The Department officials had conveyed the dire situation at a discussion held at the Wildlife Department with the Minister yesterday.

Zoo officials said that the problem had been exasperated by a decline in visitors. They also pointed out that money allocated by the government in the budget hadn’t been received yet.

As much as Rs. 59 million had to be paid to the suppliers, and another Rs. 120 million was necessary for the rest of the year.


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