Those who have reserved a grave cannot sell that grave.
The City of Ekurhuleni would like to dispel the misconception that the reservation of a grave confers ownership of such a burial site and entitles the burial site applicant to sell that right of use to a third party.
“Reservation of a grave does not confer any form of ownership of a grave. It only gives one the right to bury a loved one in the grave,” said Themba Gadebe, spokesperson for the metro.
Graves can only be purchased from the city as and when required for immediate use.
Nevertheless, a person who has reserved a grave may cancel the reservation of the grave and get a refund, while the city will reallocate the same to others in need.
The reservation of graves is governed through the cemeteries and crematorium by-laws. In the event where the person who has reserved a grave is deceased, the family or heirs may relinquish the right to use the unused grave back to the city.
“According to the city’s by-laws on cemeteries and crematoriums, the transferring of rights in respect of existing reserved graves or selling of a reserved unused grave is prohibited. However, the city may revoke a reservation on application by the person who has reserved it and refund the interment fee applicable at the time of the application,” Gadebe added.
Applications for rescinding of a reservation can be submitted to the cemetery officer where the grave concerned is located for further processing.
If the applicant for a reserved grave is deceased, a person intending to get a refund for a reserved grave has to bring an affidavit indicating he/she can transact on behalf of the other family members or heirs.
The affidavit has to also state the concerned family members or heirs are entitled to receive the proceeds from the reserved grave. This affidavit has to be submitted together with an application to the cemetery office at the cemetery where the unused grave is.