Manatees photographed in their natural habitat.

By Ovedhe Hezekiah

The Delta state government has warned youths in the state against the killing of protective animals.

State laws on wildlife conservation forbid the capture, torture or killing of protective animals including manatee also known as sea cow which was recently captured in Burutu area of Delta state.

The state government gave the warning following the recent capture and torture of manatee, a sea animal protected from extinction.

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The Commissioner for Information, Mr Aniagwu Charles, in a statement on Sunday criticised the youths who were filmed dragging a manatee, saying that their action was an embarrassment to the state.

“The attention of the Delta state government has been drawn to a virile online video where some uninformed youths were seen dragging a captured manatee which is among protective sea animals.”

“We condemn in its entirety the inhuman act of the unidentified youths whose actions have become an embarrassment to the state.”

“The state government seriously frowns at the actions of these youths which negates the Bonn Convention on Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals.”

“The government hereby warns that anyone caught hunting protective animals within the state, will be arrested and prosecuted in line with relevant laws of the land.”

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“Let me re-emphasise that it is against the law for those in the habit of killing animals that are protected by the law.”

“Anybody caught killing such animal will be jailed because we cannot continue to watch people destroy our nature out of ignorance.”

“Rather than kill such animals, people are advised to render help to them to return to their natural habitats where necessary”, the statement adds.