Consider Cremation: MD

Managing director of the Glenrowan Investments Funeral Home, John Glanville, has stated that with morgues being stretched over their limits and cemeteries running out of space, the PNG Government should consider cremation.

Glanville believes this is the way forward in relieving some of the burdens placed by COVID-19.

An increase in COVID-19 deaths around the country has led to an influx of bodies into limited capacity mortuaries.

The Port Moresby General Hospital’s mortuary has reported an excess of 300 bodies while Morobe and Goroka’s COVID-19 Hospital morgues have reached their limits.

This, in turn, means burial sites are running out of space.

Glanville outlined that establishing a crematorium would be a step forward in addressing the issue of space, although building it would be costly.

Lo mi lo bildim, em bai teikim taim blo mi,” he stated. “Mi gat driman lo bildim but it boils down to money. (It’ll take time for me to build it. I dream of building it but it boils down to money.)

“If gavman ken lukluk lo disla lo yumi kisim crematorium, em bai orait stret. (It would be good if the government was to consider building a crematorium.)

“Em yumi save olsem bacteria em go stret lo faia na em finish nau.” (We know that once the bacteria gets into the flames, it’s gone.)

Glanville said burning a body will prevent the spread of diseases, especially COVID-19, considering PNG’s approach to mourning involves very close contact with a dead body.

“From the hospital, they are doing a good job; yumi sa sterilaisim bodi, everything na em sa kamaut. Em ken go but bacteria em nonap soim olsem wait o blek na bai yu lukim, no. Bacteria em bai still stap yet so disla samting em yumi nidim.” (From the hospital, they are doing a good job; they sterilize the body and do everything before it is taken out. The bacteria is still there; it doesn’t show itself in black or white, no. It’ll still remain in the body that’s why we need a crematorium.)

Glanville has land available to build a crematorium. He needs funding assistance to get the project off the ground.

(Morticians at the Glenrowan Investments Funeral Home at 14-Mile, outside Lae)

Carmella Gware