MJC Deputy President, Sheikh Riad Fataar said they had requested the board to re-evaluate the closing time due to the increased need for burials. Photographer: Armand Hough/African News Agency(ANA)
MJC Deputy President, Sheikh Riad Fataar said they had requested the board to re-evaluate the closing time due to the increased need for burials. Photographer: Armand Hough/African News Agency(ANA)

Mowbray Muslim cemetery to close later due to the increased need for burials

By Sisonke Mlamla Time of article published Jan 21, 2021

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Cape Town - Following the much-awaited outcomes of the meeting held by the Mowbray Muslim Cemetery Board and the Muslim Judicial Council (MJC) at the weekend, several changes have been introduced to the graveyard.

MJC Deputy President, Sheikh Riad Fataar said they had requested the board to re-evaluate the closing time due to the increased need for burials, saying after deliberating and reconsideration, the board decided that as a rule, members of the public who have lost a loved one would never need to pay any additional fees for arriving after the closing time of the cemetery.

This comes after the Muslim Cemetery Board stuck to its guns following outrage over the R500 late penalty fee it charged for burials at the cemetery.

A video has apparently surfaced on social media showing money being paid to a burial supervisor at the cemetery gate to have a body buried after the cemetery had been closed.

In a statement yesterday, the board apologised for "such behaviour" and confirmed that they have since taken corrective action to improve non-conformities and other undesirable situations from repeating itself.

The board said it was also clear that the burial should preferably take place within 24 hours of death unless such requirement was impeded by factors beyond the control of all involved.

"However, we must remain cognisant of the current pandemic regulations, labour rules, and any other laws applicable to the day-to-day operations of cemeteries. To give effect to the aforesaid considerations, we have decided to amend our times to close at 16:30 daily."

The board requested that "undertakers be cognisant of the 30-minute burial proceeding requirement in line with the condition of the City of Cape Town Circular 8 December, 2020 dated 28 December, 2020."

It said the undertaker shall be held liable for an admin fee. "It is important to note that the undertaker shall not impose such admin fee to any family of the deceased."

"There are no additional charges for arriving late during the times that the cemetery is open for burials," said the board.

Cape Argus

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