Repatriation of Nobuhle "Buhle" Bhengu's Remains (Body).
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Nobuhle Bhengu better known as Buhle amongst her friends and family was a South African Citizen from the Township bid uMlazi in the City of Durban. Buhle had in the previous year (2018) been given the opportunity to work aboard the MSC Cruise known as Seaside and she had left the country having done all required medical inspections done by her new employer MSC. Buhle managed to work with no issues for the better part of 2018 on the cruise and the year ended with nothing suspicious about her health and was still working on board the MSC ship. In early weeks of February 2019 Buhle fell ill whilst still working on board and unfortunately succumbed to her illness whilst in Nassau Bahamas. After receiving such horrible news, Buhle's family immediately started to enquire about their daughters death and how they could get her body back so that they could say their last goodbyes and give her the burial she deserves. It is then that the family would feel the sharpest pain since losing their loved one, having to be told that the body of Buhle would not be sent back to South Africa but rather the Nassau Bahamas Government had decided that the body be cremated without the consent of the family and without consulting the relevant South African authorities. Having received such news some family members quickly flew out of the country and went to the Bahamas with hope that they could convince the Bahamian authorities otherwise and at least get to view Buhle's body. Unfortunately upon arrival they were immediately told that they would neither be given the body nor will they be given the chance to identify the body of Nobuhle and instead were informed that the body was due for cremation on the 12th of March 2019, now faced with these shocking news and being stranded in a foreign country with nobody to fight on their behalf, the Family members have since seeked assistance far and wide with the hope that they will be afforded the chance to get the closure they deserve as a family. The South African High Commission in Jamaica Kingston has since written to Butler's Funeral & Crematorium (5 March 2019) informing them not to go ahead with the cremation, but still the family members who are in the Bahamas have been told that the scheduled cremation will go ahead. In a desperate attempt to get Buhle home and also the race against time we are now faced with, we need urgent intervention to this debacle that the Bhengu family is faced with. After the story broke out on Social Media on Friday Morning, the South African Government reached out to the Family through the Minister of Communications and escalated the matter to the Department of International Relations, but unfortunately in the early hours of Saturday morning (9 March 2019) those family members in the Bahamas were contacted by the Foreign Affairs office of that country and were informed that they have taken the decision to go ahead with cremation and it needs to been done as soon as possible according to them, stating that the body is now infectious and it would not be safe to have it transported anywhere. We find this strange because Nobuhle had no infectious diseases as MSC conducts medical inspections on all their employees, if that was the case wouldn't have MSC known and sent her home to go recover and get medical assistance? MSC must account and release medical records. We are now in a fight against time as we do not know when the Nassua Bahamas Government will cremate Buhle without the family's consent. We need everyone to be our voice of cry as we plea for the remains of Nobuhle Bhengu to released and handed over to the South African Government. Help us get Buhle back home.
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