The Lagos government has given go-ahead to families, who have corpses in mortuaries but haven’t been able to bury them within the last two months due to the restriction occasioned by the outbreak of coronavirus to try and do so within the following period, the state reports.
It said the permission was because mortuaries have gotten congested and government could also be compelled to hold out mass burial if there’s no decongestion within the next period.
Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu gave the go- ahead on Saturday at a group discussion in Lagos House Marina.
The Governor said the directive became inevitable because mortuaries in Lagos were planning to their peak due to corpses awaiting funeral before the outbreak of coronavirus et al. that have passed on within the last two months of outbreak and restrictions.
Sanwo-Olu, however, made it clear that the corpses don’t seem to be as results of death from coronavirus, adding that the state has only recorded 18 cases of death from COVID-19.
“These don’t seem to be COVID-19 deaths in any form, funerals haven’t been held within the last two months more or less, so congestion isn’t as a results of death from covid-19 which is barely 18 recorded up to now within the state,” he clariefied.
The Governor therefore appealed to Lagosians who have corpses within the mortuaries to travel ahead and schedule the funerals, adding that funerals are on the list of exemption from the lockdown restrictions.
These requirements, the Governor said, are: funerals must exceed 20 persons, including the officiating ministers, physical distancing must be maintained in any respect funeral ceremonies, all attendees or mourners must wear face masks further as wash their hands before and after the ceremony and there must not be any sort of parties or reception that will accompany the funeral ceremonies.
“As long as you retain these directives and you fully adjust to them, funerals would be allowed and encouraged to require place immediately.
“If we are unable to work out a decongestion of the mortuaries across the state within the following period, Lagos government will now be compelled to hunt to possess mass burial and that we don’t want to force this on anybody, that’s why we are inquiring for the cooperation of all of us”, Sanwo-Olu said.
The governor also disclosed that he has signed the discharge of 209 inmates remanded in various correctional centres in Lagos.
“In exercise of the powers conferred on me by section 212 of the 1999 Constitution as amended, i’ve got this afternoon, following the advice of the advisory council on prerogative of mercy signed a release order for 209 inmates remanded in our various correctional centres in Lagos.
“This was worn out part to decongest the correctional centers in sight of the covid-19 pandemic and it’s also a part of a bigger effort to bring lasting reform to the administration of criminal justice in our country,” he said.