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Mon Dec 22 00:10:53 SAST 2014

Pastor rejects funeral fines

QUINTON MTYALA | 10 December, 2012 00:01
Church
Image by: DAVID GRAY / REUTERS

A KHAYELITSHA pastor has dismissed a City of Cape Town edict that funerals held on weekends may not exceed 45 minutes, saying it undermines his culture.

For just over two years now, Cape Town has issued R300 fines for overlong funerals at weekends.

The goal is to diminish congestion at cemeteries.

Pastor Khaya Maseko, of the Salvation Church of the Revival in Christ, said he does not believe he should keep checking his watch while overseeing a funeral .

"This is part of our culture. If we put a time limit on burials, we are destroying our culture. The problem we have in this province is that our culture is being undermined," says Maseko.

"We have processes that we have to do at graveyards, and it differs from each and every church.

"One just can't come with a rule; they must come with their research and consult communities," said Maseko.

Khayelitsha funeral undertaker Mbongiseni Pika said the biggest hold-up at funerals was lengthy speeches.

City of Cape Town spokesman Kylie Hatton said the rule was intended to accommodate everyone.

"What was happening before was that a lot of people weren't arriving at the right time," said Hatton.

Undertaker Kevin Hoffmeester said some cemetery foremen were more lenient than others when it came to the fines.

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