It’s very paramount that everyone gets on board in as far as animal rights are concerned. Recently, fifty-five newly recruited police officers in central region have been oriented in criminal investigation skills to enhance their capabilities and assist in the reduction of animal cruelty cases within the region and country as a whole.
This developed has happened during a one day training that took place at central region headquarters police training centre in Lilongwe. The attendees of the training were officers from Lilongwe Society for the Protection and Care of Animals (LSPCA), and police officers from different police stations around Lilongwe, Nkhotakota, Ntcheu and Kasungu.
In an interview, Central Region Police Commissioner Innocent Botomani who was also the guest of honour, said “it is important to train Police officers in laws that protect our animals in order to improve their skills in handling animal cruelty cases."
The Commissioner warned people who will be found buying, selling, carrying or mishandling animals in city streets to stop this tendency with immediate effect. Animal Protection Act of 1970 empowers the police to arrest without a warrant any person believed to be guilty of any offence under this Act.
Lilongwe Society for the Protection and Care of Animals (LSPCA) Education Coordinator, Edson Chiweta said the Animal Protection Act clearly prohibits any person to cruelly beat, kick, treat, overload, override, torture, infuriate, terrify cause to procure, and permit unnecessary suffering to animals.
“The Act lists animals under Domestication or Captivity. These include horse, ass, mule, bull, sheep, pig, goat, cat, dog or fowl or any other animal tamed to serve man. Captive animals include any animal not domestic which is in captivity or confinement,” Chiweta explained.
He also warned the public to stop with immediate effect the tendency of selling and buying of animals in undesignated places, saying such a tendency exposes animals to cruelty.
Chiweta, therefore, advised people within Lilongwe Urban to buy all Pets (dogs and cats) in designed places such as LSPCA situated in Kanengo or at any registered veterinary clinic.
For other livestock (Goats, sheep, pigs, poultry, rabbits etc.), he advised people to buy and sell them at designated markets and places in consultation with the Lilongwe City Council.
On behalf of the newly recruited CID officers, Constable Carolyn Chikalo from Nkhotakota Police Station said they would use the acquired skills and knowledge accordingly for the betterment of animal lives.