Monday, 1 May 2000

Plea to spare Noah's Ark animals

By Manasi Rajagopalan, The Straits Times
Noah's Ark In Deep Waters - Mr Raymund Wee, who looks after 500 animals in the
Noah's Ark shelter, appeals to AVA not to put them down.

Worried about the sick and the old among those at the shelter, its creator
wants to meet the land's new owner and discuss the creatures' fate

   THE creator of the Noah's Ark Lodge, which shelters about 500 domestic
animals, fears for the lives of his many-legged companions after his

   Mr Raymund Wee yesterday asked the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA)
and the shelter's new owner, Mr Thierry Lim, not to put down any of the
animals and to meet him for a discussion on its future.

   "Animals are not like commodities that can be given away.

   "I am like a father to these animals and am concerned about the sick, the
old, and the unwanted among them," he said at a press conference.

   "I have not met Mr Lim and have received no assurances from either the AVA or
him about the fate of these animals," he said.

   Mr Lim outbid Mr Wee by $12,000 on Wednesday for the tender on the land where
the Noah's Ark Lodge sits.

   Started as a pet-grooming business seven years ago, the animal refuge in
Seletar now houses about 250 dogs, 250 cats and other domestic animals such as
goats, ducks, geese, rabbits, and even a horse.

   The project had gained many supporters after Mr Wee's lease expired on Feb

   Having apparently nowhere to go, the animals seemed destined for death.

   Suddenly, instead of finding stray animals at his doorstep, Mr Wee, 51, found
animal lovers who wanted to donate food, money and time.

   One of them, Mrs Kathleen Lim, has been a volunteer with the shelter for four

   Said the sales executive: "I don't believe that anyone else besides Mr Wee
will risk running up a loss to keep a few strays alive."

   Others, such as Noah's Ark Lodge regular Pauline Lau, 33, say they will miss
the dogs, cats and farm animals.

   Said Ms Lau: "Where else in Singapore can you find ducks and geese strolling
around, or a horse grazing peacefully?"

   Mr Wee plans to continue his work in animal shelters in Malaysia and

   He says that he is disappointed by the lack of assistance from the

   "I am not asking for a golf course from the AVA, just a little proof that my
companions will be taken care of.

   "This is my soapbox, and I must take a stand for the animals," he said.

Source: The Straits Times
Date: 1 May 2000

No comments:

Post a Comment