Mpumalanga dismisses EFF claims of mass grave for poachers

2017-04-10 22:31
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Bushbuckridge - The Mpumalanga department of health says the remains of a dozen people buried in a mass burial site were those of people whose families it could not trace and not those of poachers killed in the Kruger National Park, as claimed by the EFF.

The remains were discovered in the Saselani cemetery by the party.

According to EFF Bushbuckridge whip Rhulani Qhibi, the bodies were found two weeks ago and were suspected to be those of rhino poachers killed in the Kruger National Park around 2013 and 2014 that were buried at the graveyard without their families' knowledge.

"As Bushbuckridge EFF we find it disrespectful that the Kruger National Park [treats] human death in such a disregarding manner," he said.

Kruger National Park spokesperson William Mabaso said that the park was unaware of the burials.

"Usually when there is case where poachers die inside the park then it becomes a police matter but at this point we were not aware and we've never dealt with any hospital about burying bodies," said Mabaso.

'Nobody showed up'

Mpumalanga department of health spokesperson Dumisani Malamule also dismissed allegations that the remains were those of poachers.

He said: "There are 12 corpses whose relatives could not be identified for four years and the department after working with police to track the deceased's families held a mass funeral on March 9th."

He said the department's officials had made attempts track down the families before going ahead with the burials.

"Nobody showed up to enquire about their loved ones. That's when we decided on a cemetery that is state-owned to bury the bodies."

Read more on:    eff  |  poaching

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