|Turtle species for sale on the sidewalk in HCM City. — Photo voh.com.vn|
HCM CITY — While many localities achieved high efficiency in handling wildlife-related violations reported by the people, HCM City is one of the localities that handled such cases with less efficiency, according to the latest report of Education for Nature Vietnam (ENV).
ENV, a non-governmental organisation working on wildlife conservation in Việt Nam, recently organised a seminar called "Effectiveness in handling wildlife violations reported by the people in 2022" in HCM City to release its report.
The seminar attracted the participation of more than 20 reporters from press agencies based in the city.
ENV Deputy Director Bùi Thị Hà said HCM City is one of two cities that have recorded the highest number of wildlife-related cases but rank last in terms of efficiently handling the information in 2022.
Last year, city authorities received information on 444 wildlife-related violations provided by the people, but they handled only about 17 per cent of that number. The successful handling rate of cases related to live wildlife only reached about 18 per cent.
The sale of trafficked turtle species right on the sidewalk has been happening for a long time in the city.
Among these turtle are many rare, precious, and endangered species, such as Heosemys annandalii, Indotestudo elongata and Heosemys grandis.
According to sellers, the turtles are of Cambodian origin. Each turtle costs from one to several million Việt Nam đồng. Sellers can deliver on-site in large quantities.
Although this is an illegal act, the authorities have not taken strong measures to stop the act, so the turtle sellers are not afraid, Hà said.
“I once heard a foreign tourist complain about turtles being sold on the sidewalk, and they expressed their surprise when seeing that this matter was not handled," she said.
In 2022, the response and successful handling rates of wildlife-related cases in general and the successful handling rate of cases related to live wildlife in many localities reached a high level.
ENV expects local authorities to make more efforts to bring the successful handling rate of wildlife-related cases reported by people on average over the country in 2023 to 60 per cent, progressing toward eliminating illegal wildlife trafficking in Việt Nam, she said.
Last year, the response rate related to wildlife across the country still remained stable at about 97.7 per cent.
The success rate of handling cases related to wildlife in general reached 33 per cent, and the success rate of handling cases related to living wildlife reached nearly 35 per cent.
The indexes increased slightly compared to 2021. However, they were still lower than the results recorded in 2019 and 2020.
|Education for Nature Vietnam released its report analysing the effectiveness of handling wildlife cases reported by the people in Việt Nam in 2022 at a recent seminar held in HCM City. — VNS Photo Nguyễn Diệp|
According to ENV’s report, the central province of Quảng Nam achieved the highest and most comprehensive efficiency in all criteria for handling wildlife-related cases reported by the people in 2022.
The provincial authorities actively handled 100 per cent of the cases and responded quickly after receiving the information.
They detected and seized many products from wildlife; removed illegal wildlife advertising menus; and confiscated, received and transferred 1,172 live wildlife animals to the authorities for handling.
The success rate of handling cases in the province reached nearly 85 per cent, and the success rate related to live wildlife reached 94 per cent.
The provinces of Đồng Nai, Thanh Hóa, Gia Lai, Quảng Nam, Bình Thuận and Bình Dương, and Cần Thơ City also had high efficiency in handling wildlife-related information reported by the people.
Meanwhile, Hà Nội received 113 cases and handled more than 28 per cent, of which nearly 33 per cent of cases related to live wildlife were successfully handled.
Many other localities such as Bà Rịa-Vũng Tàu and Đắk Lắk have also made great efforts in law enforcement for wildlife protection and handling wildlife-related case information reported by the people.
Established in 2000, ENV is at the forefront of efforts to end illegal wildlife trafficking in Việt Nam by a number of actions aiming to reduce the demand for wildlife and prevent wildlife violations.
Since 2007, ENV has focused on three main strategies. First, it enhances coordination with policymakers to strengthen institutions, overcome legal loopholes, and encourage effective implementation of policies and laws on wildlife protection.
Second, it promotes the effectiveness of law enforcement by directly supporting the authorities in preventing and repelling wildlife violations.
Third, it strives to reduce consumption demand for wildlife products through long-term and sustainable campaigns to change community awareness and behavior.
It also encourages the community to actively participate in wildlife protection by reporting signs of violations to local authorities or to the toll-free hotline number 18001522.
Since 2019, ENV has begun to analyse the effectiveness of handling wildlife-related cases reported by the people in all localities nationwide with the goal of providing evaluation indexes to local government leaders. — VNS