MIJAS town hall has reneged on its promise to introduce measures to protect ‘abused’ donkeys used as taxis in the pueblo.
It comes after Swedish expat Mike Frizell was told by Mayor Juan Carlos Maldonado that ‘immediate action’ would be taken following his seven-year campaign to bring in new laws.
Campaigners say animals have died after working in the stifling heat and carrying adults too heavy for their frames, while they are allegedly beaten by their owners and bound-up to walls, forcing them to sleep stood up in their own faeces.
“The town hall have told lies after lies,” the 55-year-old told the Olive Press, who said tourists leave the town crying after witnessing the donkey cruelty.
In what he thought was a breakthrough move last week, Frizell ‘held back tears’ as town hall officials agreed on new working animal rules, including only allowing children to ride the donkeys.
He also received permission to build a safe stable where all 120 donkeys would be housed after raising the €120,000 needed through his own money and donations from locals.
“They told me they would make changes starting that same day,” added the campaigner, who set-up the 1,400-strong Facebook page, Mijas Pueblo Animal Cruelty.
But one week later, nothing had been done and Frizell has now been told action will be taken ‘in the future’.
He vowed: “The town hall don’t keep their promises, so I will close down the donkey business.
“The respect for animals in Andalucia is the worst I’ve ever seen.”
Frizell, who claims he has received death threats for generating ‘bad publicity’, is now planning a 4,500km walk from Mijas to Sweden via the UK to raise awareness across Europe.
A previous meeting with the town hall in April had to be cancelled after officials failed to show, leaving Frizell and 70 supportive locals waiting for hours.
The town hall failed to comment in time for press.
Visit www.mijaspueblodonkeys.webnode.com to help Frizell.