News24

Mortuary takes 5 hours to collect body

2012-04-23 12:02

Pietermaritzburg - A mortuary van took more than five hours to collect a body at the scene of an accident in Howick on Sunday.

Waiting with the corpse, in the rain, was uMngeni Municipality councillor Sithembiso Nkuna from Ward 4, who was outraged.

“Is this what we call a ‘service’?” he asked angrily.

The van from the mortuary only arrived at 17:45 - as Nkuna was speaking to The Witness - to pick up the deceased. The accident had happened at 12:45.

“As a councillor, I want to bring this to the attention of the department of health,” he said.

The responsibility for mortuaries across the country was transferred from the police to the health department six years ago, he said.

“Does the department of health know what it is doing?” he asked.

Driver unlicensed, drunk

Nkuna said the accident happened when a car failed to stop at a red traffic light, and crashed into another.

“The police were on the scene by 13:00,” he said.

An ambulance had arrived shortly afterwards, and people who were injured were taken to hospital. The person that died had been in the car that had failed to stop, he said.

“It was later discovered that the driver of the vehicle that failed to stop had been unlicensed, and also under the influence of alcohol,” Nkuna added. The driver had since been taken into police custody.

However, Nkuna was outraged at what he described as a lack of a service.

KwaZulu-Natal spokesperson Captain Thulani Zwane confirmed that the driver had been arrested, and that he did not have a driver’s licence.

However, he could not confirm whether or not he was under the influence of alcohol.

“He is expected to appear in the Howick Magistrate’s Court [on Monday],” he said.

Multiple attempts to contact the department of health on Sunday proved unsuccessful.

Comments
  • cmojanaga - 2012-04-23 12:29

    I had same problem last week when one of patient died @fire station they took 5hours to come and pick up the body and had to sit with it till they came. Imagine from 16hours till 19hours

      Philemon - 2012-04-23 12:47

      Dear Eastern Cape graduate From 16h00 to 19h00 is only 3 hours. Were you in a shebeen for the other 2 hours?

      Rob - 2012-04-23 12:57

      Philemon...LOL !

  • cmojanaga - 2012-04-23 12:30

    I had same problem last week when one of patient died @fire station they took 5hours to come and pick up the body and had to sit with it till they came. Imagine from 16hours till 19hours

      Rob - 2012-04-23 12:31

      Repeat offence ?

      Vernon - 2012-04-23 15:34

      Rob...LOL!

  • Marion - 2012-04-23 12:31

    Maybe necrophilia caused the delay.

      Rob - 2012-04-23 12:43

      Marion....I am shocked ! Great comment though :-)

      Koos - 2012-04-23 15:35

      I think my eyes just popped out! Becoming a hijacker might have changed you Marion.

  • The-madKing - 2012-04-23 12:42

    thats kinda lame ... hadn't the body started to rot by that tym?

  • mhlengi.shinga - 2012-04-23 12:43

    On our teritory we use to wait for more than 8hours .

      Marion - 2012-04-23 12:45

      Shocking.

  • anthro45 - 2012-04-23 12:44

    This is common practice. Just another example of non-service delivery.

  • Gareth - 2012-04-23 12:45

    A mate of mine brought his family over from England. They spent a week at Port Alfred. He was standing near the river mouth watching his young daughter play in the sand when he noticed the arm of a young child half buried/visible. He called the on duty lifeguard who merely used two sticks to gather up the arm before disposing of it in the nearest rubbish bin. Hows that for service! Dismayed by this nonchalant behaviour, my mate then called the police. Life in Africa is cheap judging by these incidents.

  • Jonny Lee - 2012-04-23 13:02

    No service delivery is the norm by now, so make news when there is some, okay?

  • tom.vorster - 2012-04-23 13:28

    “As a councillor, I want to bring this to the attention of the department of health,” What joy will the rest of us non-councillors have in getting these inept deployed cadres in providing a decent service?

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