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Grandmother "Steals" Boy's Corpse From Mortuary

3 weeks agoSat, 18 May 2024 05:34:51 GMT
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Grandmother "Steals" Boy's Corpse From Mortuary

A woman from Chief Mutasa in Mutasa District, Manicaland Province, allegedly misrepresented herself as the mother of her deceased grandson and stole his corpse from the mortuary.

The woman, Dropper Makwanza, reportedly “stole” the body of the late Denver Makwanza (14) from Bonda Mission Hospital mortuary and fast-tracked the burial without the knowledge and consent of the deceased’s mother, Lisa Mafunga.

According to The Manica Post, Makwanza allegedly falsified information and impersonated the deceased’s mother to collect a burial order for her grandson without informing and agreeing with the mother.

Chief Mutasa, who presided over the matter last Saturday at his traditional court, was shocked by the incident and referred it to Ruda Police Station for criminal investigations.

He adjourned the matter to June 8, 2024.

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Arguing his case before the traditional court, Lisa’s father, Peter Mafunga, claimed his family only discovered that Denver had been buried through the grapevine. He said:

We only discovered the truth after rumours started circulating, and it devastated us. Moreover, my grieving daughter was waiting for the arrival of the deceased’s father from South Africa so that they could bury their late son together. She did not know that her son had already been buried without her knowledge.

My daughter and the deceased’s father had separated, and I was the one looking after their two children all along. To hear that they buried one of the children I have been taking care of behind my back and without my grieving daughter’s knowledge or consent is shocking.

My family lives just a village away from theirs. This unthinkable act subjected my grieving daughter to emotional and psychological trauma, torture, unimaginable pain and suffering.

Her son’s death was tragic, and the events that followed rubbed salt and hot pepper on a bleeding wound, and such a scar will take ages to heal.

She is emotionally and psychologically paralysed, and I hope justice will be served, with those responsible facing the full wrath of the law for their despicable actions.

Mafunga further claimed that Dropper Makwanza forged documents, and misrepresented herself as the deceased’s mother to collect the corpse from the hospital mortuary for burial.

Lisa, with tears rolling down her cheeks throughout the court session, said that she did not even know where her late son was buried. She said:

I am in pain, and as I speak, I do not know where they buried my son. I did not bid him farewell. They manipulated the whole process and collocated his corpse and buried it behind my back.

However, Makwanza disputed all the allegations, arguing that she informed Lisa about Denver’s death and the Mafungas then demanded US$500 to attend the funeral. She said:

They demanded that we pay them US$500 before they would allow the burial of their grandchild. We were in the process of looking for the money and had raised about US$250, but could not raise the whole amount.

I then contacted the deceased’s father in South Africa, who sent us some money for the burial and instructed us to bury his child, and there was nothing we could do.

She also said they collected the corpse from the hospital with the aid of letters from the police and their village head. Said Makwanza:

The letters stated that the deceased’s mother and her family were refusing to take part in the funeral proceedings.

Those are the same letters together with my identity card that we used to obtain the burial order. Everything was done above board.

I never forged any documents and never misrepresented myself as the child’s mother.

Chief Mutasa criticised both families for their conduct and vowed to get to the bottom of the matter.

He said it was culturally unacceptable to connive to bury the deceased without the knowledge and consent of the grieving mother.

The traditional leader also said it was unconscionable for any bereaved family to demand payment as a condition for participating in the funeral proceedings of a relative. He said:

How could you stoop so low as to steal a corpse and bury it without the grieving mother’s knowledge or consent? And what kind of family would demand payment to sanction the burial of their loved one?

Why did you not just let them bury the child according to the Burial and Cremation Act, and deal with any other outstanding issues afterwards?

Both families were wrong, and we will deal with this matter to its logical conclusion.

First, we need to ascertain how you got the burial order without any identity particulars to prove that you were the mother of the deceased as well as how you collected the corpse from the mortuary.

The Burial and Cremation Act provides regulations related to the burial of deceased persons and stillborn children.

The Act covers provisions for both burial (in earth, interment, or other forms of sepulture) and cremation (burning of human bodies).

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