Court: You can now slaughter your donkey
The High Court has lifted ban on slaughter of donkeys that was introduced by the State in 2020.
Move paves way for four slaughterhouses to continue with their operations despite concern from animal activists over their dwindling numbers.
In February 2020, Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya directed management of four abattoirs to stop operations following concern that donkeys’ numbers were on the decline.
The affected slaughterhouses were Star Brilliant (Naivasha), Goldox Kenya Limited (Mogotio), Silzha (Turkana) and Fuhai (Machakos)
But last year, the management of the Naivasha-based facility moved to the High Court seeking judicial review on the legal notice.
Under a certificate of urgency, Star Brilliant noted that they had already received a notice from the government to stop operations despite investing millions into their venture.
In his ruling, Justice Richard Mwongo noted that the Attorney General and the Cabinet Secretary had failed to file a response to the application challenging the legal notice.
In his ruling, Justice Mwongo noted that legal notice violated the rights of Star Brilliant that has been operating for over five years.
“The government has failed to sufficiently defend this case and this court quashes the Legal Notice 63 of 2020 as it violates the rights of Star Brilliant,” he said in his ruling.
The judge further noted that the State through the office of the AG had failed to respond to issues raised by the applicant in all the occasions.
“The legal notice violates the rights of the applicant under Article 47 of the Constitution and the applicant is granted stay to operate in light of the failure by the respondent to file back his response,” said the judge.
The State will bear the cost of the case.
Through advocate Wairegi Kiarie, Star Brilliant proprietors noted that they slaughter and export of donkey, adding that due to the notice their export license had been cancelled.
Wairegi told the court that due to the legal notice, the government meat inspector was no longer visiting the facility to inspect the meat while the product could not be sold locally as per their license.
The advocate told the court that CS and the AG had failed to respond to the application despite being served by the applicant.
“The respondents despite being served by the applicant have not responded and this application should be treated as unopposed,” he said.