- Animal shelter disappointed over City Health Office’s statement on closure
THE FOUNDER of Happy Animals Club took his disappointment to social media over the city government’s statement following the order to shut the shelter down.
Ken Amante said the City Health Office’s statement was not what they had hoped for, claiming they never denied entry to local inspectors and officials.
“The City Government just put out a statement regarding our closure. This was disappointing to read. Instead of acknowledging the public outcry and promising to work towards a solution with us, the statement contains blatant lies,” the Happy Animals’ Club Facebook post read.
“Moreover, City Government’s page is actively deleting comments on their post in our favor. The City Government’s social media manager should not be conducting petty censorship. So disappointing. If you post a comment, be sure to take a screenshot, and let us know if it gets deleted.”
During the Davao City Disaster Radio broadcast on Oct 20, CHO-Sanitation Division chief Luzminda Paig said the shelter allegedly barred the inspectors during two ocular inspection attempts made on May 26 and July 31.
“Wala man kasulod ang inspector, naa ra siya sa gawas, nasimhotan gyud niya ang baho, na [hibal-an] og unsa gyud ka-saba, naa na siya sa report” Paig recalled the first attempt.
“ Wala’y nag-assist nga naay daghang iro sa gawas, mga tulo yata to, nakita man naa ma’y pictures,” she added.
After the first attempt, the sanitary inspector issued a notice of violation of sanitation and noise and recommended the transfer of the animals to an appropriate area to avoid causing nuisance to the surrounding community.
Paig said that the owner provided mitigating measures to abate the odor and nuisance. However, after the 15-day grace period, the office conducted a follow-up inspection and realized the odor and nuisance were still there.
The inspector issued another sanitary order to the shelter to address the violations and was given a 12-day grace period. Paig said the shelter is still non-compliant which prompted the office to bring the issue to the business bureau, which issued the closure order on Sept. 27.
Paig stressed that apart from the complaints of the neighbor of the shelter, six individuals who reported against the shelter were endorsed to CHO by Matina Aplaya barangay captain Nestor Cirunay.
Meanwhile, CHO had communicated with the shelter to conduct a re-inspection and dialogue on October 20.
While re-inspection is ongoing, the city government said that the closure is in violation of City Ordinance No. 0291-17 under the Revenue Code of Davao City, particularly the rules and regulations on sanitation.
“The City Government of Davao will likewise look into the allegations on the matter of impartiality in dealing with this complaint. This will not be taken lightly. An investigation will be conducted within our ranks to ensure integrity and truth in all our undertakings in the local government,” the statement read.
Meanwhile, PAWSsion Project started a petition over the “unjust closure” which will affect over 300 stray cats and dogs housed in the shelter. As of this writing, 44,513 have signed the petition.
“The abrupt and unwarranted decision to close Happy Animals Club carries severe and distressing implications. This institution has long served as a refuge for many animals, providing them with safety, love, and rehabilitation. By forcing its closure, we are not just displacing these vulnerable beings but exposing them to a potentially tragic fate,” the petition read.
Photo courtesy of Happy Animals Club Facebook page
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