Fonseka threatens to resign over Sinharaja elephant issue

Minister of Sustainable Development, Wildlife and Regional Development Sarath Fonseka has threatened to resign from his Ministerial portfolio over the Sinharaja elephant issue.

Speaking at an event in Rakwana today, Fonseka said that his duty is to resolve the human-elephant conflict resulting from the elephants in Sinharaja.

The Minister said that if anyone attempts to pull his leg when he looks to resolve the issue he will resign.

A decision taken to shift two rare elephants from the Sinharaja Forest Reserve had been suspended on the instructions of the President.

President Maithripala Sirisena had instructed the Secretary to the Ministry of Environment and the Director General of the Department of Wildlife Conservation to keep the two rare elephants in the Sinharaja Forest Reserve, a World Heritage site, until a decision is taken after formulating a proper procedure.

Fonseka said that if decisions taken by a Minister are overturned through a simple telephone call it is the public who will suffer.

He alleged that the decision to shift all the elephants from the Sinharaja Forest Reserve was suspended owing to the intervention of NGO’s backed with foreign funding. (Colombo Gazette)