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MBABANE - Police had to be called to intervene after two families clashed over a corpse that was carried in a bag and had to be immediately buried.

The incident happened at Mshasheni in Ezulwini, under Lobamba Constituency last Tuesday. The corpse was brought to a Mavimbela homestead by a Ndaba family for burial. The corpse was of a two-month-old baby who died at a health facility after falling sick. The baby’s mother is from the Mavimbela family while the baby’s father is from the Ndaba family. Information gathered was to the effect that the Ndaba family called and informed the baby’s grandfather, Nathi Mavimbela, that his daughter had lost her two-month-old baby at around 5pm on Tuesday. It is said that the Ndaba family, led by Sipho Alex Ndaba, further requested for a burial site since they were rooted in Mozambique, meaning they had nowhere to bury the corpse in the country.


It is said that Nathi agreed that his grandchild could be buried at his parental homestead, on condition the corpse was brought in a coffin. It was stated that the Ndaba family collected the corpse at the Raleigh Fitkin Memorial (RFM) Hospital in Manzini and proceeded to Ezulwini in a hired motor vehicle. With them was a red bag, in which the corpse of the minor had been stuffed. It was gathered that Nathi welcomed the Ndaba family and further provided them with a room where talks were to take place. During an interview, Nathi confirmed having agreed to bury his grandchild at his parental homestead after the Ndaba family informed him about their predicament.


He stated that his consent did not come easy as he was never made aware of his daughter’s second pregnancy, since she left the homestead with another child. He mentioned that he had never met the Ndaba family who lived with his daughter. “I asked if they had brought a coffin because I didn’t see any. To my surprise, they told me that they did not have a coffin, before showing me the red bag with the corpse. I simply asked them to take the corpse back because I had never seen a human being buried without a coffin,” Nathi said. He stated that a two-month-old baby was old enough and should be buried in a similar manner as an adult. “We do not subscribe to a culture that allows burial without a coffin,” he said. Nathi was interviewed after the baby’s grandmother, who is his former girlfriend, went around shouting for help. Her shouting attracted the residents of the area and the community police members.

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