Sharks and rays
LEAP played an active role in the Sabah Shark Protection Association (SSPA) which was set up in 2015 with the aim of conserving Sabah’s sharks and rays through increasing Sabah’s marine protected areas, strengthening law and policy regarding the capture, finning, consumption and trade of sharks and rays in Sabah and increasing awareness of the importance of sharks and rays amongst the public and other stakeholders.
Since September 2017 LEAP has been part of the Sabah Shark Alliance which together with other organisations such as WWF Malaysia Sabah, Scuba Junkie, Sharkstewards and others, supports SSPA in its activities including writing of press releases, participating in work plan development, collation of information and design of materials, input into documents on legislation and facilitation of workshops and fund raising.
LEAP is also administering the funds from the Global Protection for Sharks and Rays Fund for a shark and ray conservation project focusing on law and policy reform, research, conservation and livelihoods and awareness in Sabah. LEAP has also inputted into shark and ray survey data being compiled for this project.
LEAP is currently involved in the preparation of the Sabah Sharks and Rays Conference to be held in Kota Kinabalu in June 2018, and during 2017 has supported other events such educational visits to schools and the alternative to shark fin soup challenge.
Media coverage of shark and ray issues is fast gaining momentum and public attention is increasing, but the demand for shark and ray products is huge. Together with its partners, LEAP hopes to play a proactive role carrying the important work of shark and ray conservation forward.