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Public urged to co-operate with regulations for burial of COVID-19 victims

This after the Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality said the body of a person who died from COVID-19 was legally regarded as a biohazard as it could present a high risk of spreading the virus.

Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The CRL Rights Commission on Thursday appealed to families and cultural groups to understand the drastic steps being taken in the burial of coronavirus (COVID-19) victims.

This after the Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality issued a statement, saying the body of a person who died from COVID-19 was legally regarded as a biohazard as it could present a high risk of spreading the virus.

The municipality said bodies could not be allowed in homes and pallbearers should wear protective clothing.

One of the five deaths in the country was in the Free State and Mangaung had the highest number of cases in the province.

The Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality said it had communicated with its residents and funeral parlours on the stringent measures that would apply to funerals of COVID-19 victims, but some residents said they were shocked that the body of a deceased would not be allowed in their home.

The commission chairperson Professor David Mosoma appealed for co-operation.

“And we have seen what is happening in Italy where they’re burying 600 people a day… I don’t think this is what we want to see [in South Africa]. So, each and every member of the Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities are encouraged to adhere to the measures that government has put forward,” Mosoma said.

The municipality said families of coronavirus victims would be assisted by environmental health experts.

For official information about COVID-19 from the Department of Health, please click here.