A bizarre incident occurred at the Community 9 Cemetery in Tema, Ghana on Saturday when mortuary attendants from a hospital disrupted a burial by seizing a corpse over a balance of Sh1,000 (GH¢40) that the bereaved family owed the undertakers.
A man who works in a mortuary at the Tema General Hospital stormed the burial ground to seize a dead body over the amount.
The staff of the morgue was said to have been hired by relatives of the deceased person to clean the corpse for an agreed fee of Sh3000 (GH¢150).
However, after rendering his private service outside the hospital duties to members of the family, they were said to have refused to pay the agreed balance but sneakily took the body away while the mortuary man was busy working on another corpse.
The mortuary attendant, in the company of his friend, a private undertaker at the hospital, shocked mourners who had gathered at the cemetery to bury their dead when they suddenly stormed the graveyard and seized the coffin, opened it, took out the dressed corpse and started heading back to the mortuary, after some relatives dared them to take the corpse away.
The conduct of the mortuary attendants shocked mourners who had gathered at the graveside to pay their last respect to the deceased.
Family elders in the company of some friends managed to save the situation which paved the way for the burial.
On Wednesday the hospital said they had opened an enquiry into the matter. In a press statement, the hospital said the management was looking into the case of the individuals involved.
“We want to reiterate the fact that management has put in place official and formalized way of depositing dead bodies at the hospital morgue and retrieving same. Any other unofficial arrangements become personal,” read the statement.