High COVID-19 death rate forces Doves to recall workers from holidays

Doves workers offload coffins from a truck

LEADING funeral company Doves has had to recall their workers from Christmas holidays so that they can make more coffins as dead bodies at the undertaker’s doorstep soared.

According to a report by Bloomberg, the deaths were being fuelled by the second wave of COVID-19 pandemic which has seen deaths in excess of 50 per day on some days, according to official statistics by the Civil Protection Unit and the Ministry of Health and Child Care.

Nyasha Matsika, the general manager for operations at Doves Holdings, tells a grim story.

Doves had to recall its staff from their Christmas holiday to produce more caskets and coffins as the number of daily funerals tripled to 21 at its main branch in Harare.

At the beginning of the year, it was confident that stocks would last until April.

Unable to bury loved ones in the usual custom as lockdown regulations restrict funeral gatherings to just 30 people and burials have to be conducted within 24 hours, Matsika said families are hiring luxury hearses such as the Mercedes Pilato to ferry the corpses of relatives.

“The funerals being carried out are not normal,” he said. Now “it’s the only fitting sendoff for their loved ones,” said the leader of Zimbabwe’s biggest funeral services company. – via Bloomberg