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‘Don’t scratch where it is not itching’

Activist and politician Job Amupanda has responded to the criticism he is facing from various individuals and organisations who disapprove of his consumption of dog meat after he posted a video of him consuming dog meat in the north.

Taking to his social media account, Amupanda defended his actions and challenged those opposing him.

“Next time I see my name in your statements you will all Nya [sh*t]. You kill our LIONS for PHOTOS in so-called ‘trophy hunting’. You equally kill and eat poor insects [sic] calling them derogatory names such as ‘Sea Food’. Don’t scratch where it is not itching!” Amupanda said on social media yesterday.

In a video shared over the weekend, Amupanda was seen eating dog meat, sparking debates about the legality and ethics surrounding the killing and consumption of dogs.

He was seen enjoying dog meat at the Omuthiya market in the Oshikoto region on Sunday. He called on the public to support the vendor.

Justice for Animals animal rights organisation issued a statement denouncing the act, citing that it violates the Animals Protection Act 71 of 1962.

The organisation yesterday announced its intention to take legal action against people who kill dogs for their meat or skin.

“Job, we are coming for you,” the organisation said.

Justice for Animals stated that the consumption of dog meat is in direct violation of the terms outlined in the act, and offenders are deemed guilty of a criminal offence.

“Any person who kills a dog with the intention of using the skin or meat or any other part of such dog for commercial purposes, acts in contravention of the notice, is guilty of a criminal offence, and is liable on conviction to a fine or imprisonment of up to six months, or both,” the statement read.

EATER … Job Amupanda enjoying dog meat at Omuthiya over the weekend. He called on members of the public to support the vendor he identified as Meme Ula. Photos: Contributed

On Monday, the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) in a statement condemned the slaughtering of dogs for human consumption as current methods of dog slaughtering are inhumane.

“For the following core reasons: dogs’ long-standing role as companion animals, and public health risks associated with the consumption of eating dog meat,” the statement reads.

The statement says the current methods of dog slaughtering, as reported to a number of SPCA branches in Namibia, include beating, bludgeoning and hanging dogs until they die.

“The Animal Protection Act of 1962 states that ‘offences in respect of animals any person who cruelly overloads, overdrives, overrides, beats, kicks, goads, ill-treats, neglects, infuriates, terrifies, tortures or maims any animal; or confines, chains, tethers or secures any animal unnecessarily or under such conditions . . .” the statement reads.

It says any person who causes an animal unnecessary suffering or keeps them in any place which affords inadequate space, ventilation, light, protection or shelter from heat, cold or weather has also committed an offence.

“All of the above actions are considered an offence under the Animal Protection Act of 1962, and should any dog slaughter or attempted dog slaughter be reported to the SPCA with sufficient evidence, the SPCA will take action and open up an animal cruelty case,” the SPCA says.

The SPCA adds that there are health concerns associated with eating dog meat.

“The World Health Organisation warns that the slaughter and consumption of dogs poses human health risks for zoonotic disease transmission, including trichinellosis (intestinal parasites, larvae that sits in the muscles of the dogs), cholera and rabies,” the statement reads.

It says dogs are one of the only species consumed by humans that are omnivores and that will eat other animals, animal remains, and animal, including human, excrement, which sets dogs aside from other land animals such as commonly consumed livestock.

The statement adds that animal meat for human consumption at abattoirs undergo testing for various diseases.