Breaking: Dive Community Alarmed by Sale of Protected Marine Species in Sabah

A storm is building in Sabah’s waterways. Under the direction of Sim Fui, president of the Deus Diving Club, the local diving community has expressed concern about the sale of protected marine species at nearby markets and restaurants. Sim made the startling discovery that open sales was taking place of catsharks and white-spotted marine species, which are thought to be protected by law.

The Call for Federal Intervention

This unsettling discovery has prompted an urgent call for federal attention. The objective? To ensure the sustainability of marine ecosystems. The Fisheries Act 1985, while providing protection to a select few shark and ray species, falls short of offering comprehensive safeguarding measures. As it stands, only four shark species and two manta ray species have been under nationwide protection since July 17, 2019. The gaping loopholes in the legislation leave a vast number of species unprotected and vulnerable to being hunted and sold.

The Impact on Sabah’s Dive Community

The situation is causing a ripple of distress among divers. These aquatic enthusiasts prefer investing in underwater observation rather than witnessing these creatures displayed in markets. This disturbing trend could potentially reduce their interest in Sabah as a favored dive destination.

The Advocacy for Stronger Protection

Sim Fui is not just raising alarms; he’s advocating for change. His call to action includes stronger legal protection and rigorous enforcement to prevent illegal fishing and exploitation of susceptible species. He emphasizes the need for public cooperation in reporting sightings of endangered species. Sim firmly believes that these collective efforts can help preserve our marine heritage for future generations to appreciate.

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