Former director denies serving zoo animals for NYE dinner
By Karol Suarez and Hira Humayun | CNN
The former head of a zoo in Mexico‘s Guerrero state has been accused of having some animals killed for meat, among other incidents.
The Guerrero Environment Department’s Director of Wildlife Fernando Ruiz said in a news conference on Tuesday that records of Zoochilpan Zoo in Chilpancingo misrepresented its number of pygmy goats last summer, and accused former director José Rubén Nava Noriega of having some cooked — a claim that Nava denied.
There were “five females and five males of which the former director had four male specimens for use at the New Year’s Eve dinner,” Ruiz alleged.
“That is to say, those four specimens were sacrificed and cooked in the facilities of the same zoo and were used as food in the year-end celebration.”
He added that the health of those who ate the meal would have been put at risk because the animals were “not suitable for human consumption.”
In a statement, the Environment Department also detailed other administrative inconsistencies at the zoo. It said that in a separate incident, Nava traded four cattle in exchange for materials, tools and supplies for the park, but that it was not informed about the delivery of the cattle in accordance with protocol, and those materials and tools were not found on the zoo’s premises.
Nava rejected all the accusations as false during a press conference on Wednesday, claiming there is a “dirty war” for control of the zoo’s budget.
He also said that all the actions carried out during the time he was in charge of the zoo were lawful.