The Office of the First Vice Executive Judge of the Quezon City
Regional Trial Court (QC RTC) today issued a Temporary Environmental
Protection Order (TEPO) enjoining the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic
Resources (BFAR) and the Department of Agriculture (DA) from issuing a
re-export permit for 25 dolphins currently at the Ocean Adventure in
Acting Executive Judge Bernelito R. Fernandez issued an order dated 12
October 2012 granting a 72-hour Temporary Environmental Protection
Order (TEPO) effective upon the receipt of the order by the BFAR and
the Department of Agriculture.
The TEPO is in response to a petition filed by Earth Island
Institute-Philippines (EII-Phils.), the Philippine Animal Welfare
Society (PAWS), CARA Welfare Philippines as well as individual animal
welfare advocates. According to the petitioners, the re-export of
dolphins is in violation of the Wildlife Act (RA 9147) and the
commitments of the country under the CITES Treaty.
The Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species
(CITES) is an international agreement between governments. Its aim is
to ensure that international trade in specimens of wild animals and
plants does not threaten their survival. The Philippines ratified
CITES on August 18, 1981 and entered into force on November 16, 1981.
According to the petition filed by EII, PAWS, CARA et al., dolphins
harvested from the Solomon Islands and imported into the country in
batches starting December 2008, January 2009 and January 2011,
threatens the survival of the wild populations in the Solomon Islands.
Apart from seeking a TEPO to re-export the dolphins, the petitioners
are also seeking the nullification of the import permits for the 25
dolphins from the Solomon Islands and the rehabilitation and release
of the dolphins back to their natural habitat.######