Civic and Municipal Affair Bureau (IACM) administration committee member Ung Sau Hong said Wednesday that penalties proposed in the latest version of the government’s long-delayed animal protection bill are “very tough.”
Ung said the maximum fine of 100,000 patacas should be deterrent enough to prevent animals from being abused.
According to The Macau Post Daily, she made the remarks to reporters after attending a meeting of the government-appointed IACM Consultative Council.
The bureau said in a statement that it has completed the draft of the bill and the drafting of two by-laws related to the bill. The texts are being analysed by the Legal Affairs Bureau (DSAJ).
The bureau also said it hoped the bill could be approved by the Legislative Assembly (AL) and then be promulgated later in the year.
The two by-laws are expected to be discussed by the government’s top advisory body, the 10-member Executive Council (ExCo), later this year and next year respectively.
By-laws (administrative regulations) do not require the legislature’s approval to take effect.
Talking to reporters about the bill, Ung said the bill’s main emphasis was on preventing animals from being killed and abused and how to protect them.
Asked by reporters as to how the government will respond to public calls for tougher penalties for animal abusers, Ung said the bill stated that the fine for anyone found guilty of breaking the law will face a fine of up to 100,000 patacas.
“The penalties [stated in bill] are very high …I think they are very tough,” Chan said, adding that the bureau did not suggest any prison sentences in the bill.
Asked by reporters as to whether merely pecuniary punishment will be a big enough deterrent to prevent people from abusing or harming animals, Ung answered that the penalties were very tough.
In other jurisdictions, such as Hong Kong, animal abusers face jail time.(macaunews)