Msunduzi to use Ethembeni cemetery after space runs out for the dead

2014-02-28 00:00

WITH delays on the Hollingwood cemetery project, Msunduzi council, mindful that space has filled up at its other cemeteries, has acquired the Ethembeni cemetery and will use it as an interim measure.

Municipal manager Mxolisi Nkosi reminded full council that, as was previously reported, they were using the road reserves as burial sites in the Mountain Rise cemetery.

Nkosi added that the Ethembeni cemetery area was limited and the rest of the property, made up of an addition two subdivisions, had been earmarked for housing. He said the municipality was keen to develop a mixed housing project on the remaining site — over 100 hectacres. “This would meet the current and future housing needs of the city,” he said. “An agreement to purchase the land has been signed between the municipality and the owners of the property, however, this is subject to funding being provided by the Department of Human Settlements,” Nkosi said.

He added that an agreement for the provision of funding had since been signed and he was hoping that the property transaction would be completed by the end of March.

But with limited space at Ethembeni, Pietermaritzburg’s cemetery problems are not quite solved.

Nkosi said they were in the process of scouting around for other sites; some had been earmarked but it was too early to confirm the sites as environmental and geological surveys would have to be carried out to see whether they are suitable for the development of a cemetery.

A search through The Witness archives showed that the entire subdivision that had been earmarked for a cemetery at Ethembeni could not be used due to the geology of the land as certain areas were to close to the water table.

The Witness had carried stories of graves getting water-logged.

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