We – animal rights groups, Legislative Council members, and citizens who are concerned about animals – are strongly opposed to the appropriation, and demand its immediate withdrawal.
For years, Ocean Park has been criticised for keeping animals in captivity and putting on animal shows. As a matter of fact, animal captivity and breeding have been banned gradually in 18 countries around the world, including the United Kingdom, the United States, and France. Many aquariums have put an end to animal shows as well.
Ocean Park, however, over the years continue to ignore the rising demand for ending captivity. Each day it puts on 4 dolphins shows, and never stops introducing and breeding more animals for display. Ocean Park failed to educate our young generation about the nature – it only demonstrate erroneous values and attitudes about the environment and life. The appropriation is a use of public money to do injustice to animals, corrupting the minds of the younger generation – we call it a degeneration of civilisation!
As a publicly owned limited company, Ocean Park ought to be self-financing. Yet since its establishment, the Hong Kong government has provided support to the park in many ways, such as granting land for its expansion and constructing an MTR station at the entrance of the park. In the Budget this year, the government goes further to allocate money to financially support the theme park, which prompts the public to suspect transfer of interests in the deal. We thus urge the government to make known to the public the process of negotiation, reasons and guidelines regarding this appropriation, and to immediately withdraw the proposal.