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Monkey business

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The Calabarzon regional office of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) on Tuesday issued a stern warning against people who are keeping monkeys as pets.

DENR Calabarzon Director Maria Paz Luna issued the warning after a photo of the monkey kept in a church patio went viral.

“We will start prosecuting those who keep them,” she said.

She noted that it is illegal to keep monkeys and other wild animals without the necessary permit. Under existing laws “no person or entity shall be allowed possession of wildlife unless such person or entity can prove financial and technical capability and facility to maintain said wildlife.”

The DENR eventually traced the allegedly ill-treated monkey within the compound of St. Gregory Parish Church in Indang, Cavite.

They found out that a private individual brought the monkey to Rev. Father Alex Tupas some two years ago for custody and safekeeping and that the animal is healthy. Nevertheless, the priest agreed to surrender the monkey.

The DENR’s message is simple. Unless you’re authorized to do so, don’t take any wild animal to be your pet.

In the department’s book, that’s monkey business.

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