The National Council of SPCAs (NSPCA) which has been a member of the Livestock Welfare Coordinating Committee (LWCC) since its inception more than four decades ago, withdrew its membership from the organisation in November 2020, said Ms. Marcelle Meredith, Executive Director of the NSPCA.
Ms. Meredith stated that the majority of the LWCC membership moved from a position where they previously opposed the live export of animals by sea, to one that actively promotes the trade. This position was unanimously adopted by LWCC members in 2012 and was revised in 2019, the basis essentially for short hauls with far fewer animals to Mauritius.
The NSPCA finds it disconcerting that some members of the LWCC, who have for years supported the banning of live export by sea now wish to develop standards relating to a cruel practice at the LWCC, those based on Chapter 7.2 TRANSPORT OF ANIMALS BY SEA – Terrestrial Animal Health Code published by the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE). The codes published by the OIE are minimum welfare standards and are not formally recognized by South Africa Parliament and the Animals Protection Act, No. 71 of 1962 (as amended) remains the foundation for animal legislative framework within South Africa.
The NSPCA saw it counterproductive and untenable to remain as a member of a welfare grouping which is currently in litigation against us. It would be an anomalous situation to be in, especially considering the public interest in this, both locally and internationally and from an ethical viewpoint, the NSPCA withdrew as a member of the LWCC, stated, Ms. Meredith.
Every living creature has intrinsic value and is a sentient being. Our primary and motivating concern is the prevention of cruelty to all living creatures. The NSPCA is, always has, and will continue to remain opposed to the transport of live animals by sea, ended Ms Meredith.