The sale of turtle eggs has always been a problem plaguing the east coast areas in Malaysia, especially in Terengganu.
Nowadays, not many people are keen on eating turtle eggs and the majority are against it due to environmental and ethical issues.
But it looks like the issue will soon come to an end - and for real this time - as the Terengganu government is mulling banning the sale of turtle eggs, no matter the species.
According to Bernama
, Agriculture, Agro-based Industry and Rural Development Committee chairman Dr Azman Ibrahim said that the sale of turtle eggs has put Terengganu under a bad light.
“As stipulated in the Terengganu Turtles Enactment 1951 (Amendment 1987), only the sale of leatherback turtle eggs is prohibited, while the sale of eggs of other turtle species is allowed. This is why we see them being sold in Payang Market,” Azman said.
“We have received complaints from people who questioned whether the state government has overlooked the enforcement (of the enactment).”
Apart from studying the proposed ban, Azman suggested that the government look into the need to amend the existing enactment, especially the fines and penalties for those who commit turtle-related offences.
“The amendment was done a long time ago and some sections involving fines are not relevant as they are too low.”
To date, four out of seven turtle species in the world are calling Terengganu home – the leatherback, the olive ridley, the hawksbill and the green sea turtles. However, the last time a turtle came to the Terengganu shores was in 2017.
Perhaps now is the best time to enact new laws to protect the turtles and its eggs. Don’t wait until it’s too late, Terengganu!