Mike Uzoma of Nekede autonomous community in Owerri West Local Government Area of Imo, allegedly killed a python and sold it on Wednesday.

The area where the python was killed is less than a kilometer away from the Imo State Zoological Garden.

The task force members mobilized quickly but by the time they got to the community to effect his arrest, the suspect had fled.

The Manager of the zoo, Dr Francis Abioye, then addressed members of the community and cautioned them against such act, explaining that all animals around the conservation area are protected by law.

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Abioye warned that anybody who kills a python, or any animal protected by the law will be arrested and prosecuted.

“I have come to educate all of you against the habit of killing animals that are protected by the law.

“Anybody caught killing such animal must be jailed because we cannot continue to watch people destroy our nature out of ignorance”, he said.

Abioye said rather than kill such animals, the residents should contact the zoo curator to capture them.

Some of the residents who spoke, commended the manager for coming to educate them on why some special animals must be protected.

One of them, Mrs Angela Amaefula said she was ignorant of the law prohibiting the killing of some animals like python and urged the zoo manager to make such enlightenment programmes a regular event.

According to her, doing so would enable members of the public to become fully aware of the need to be friendly with such animals.

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