NAIROBI, Kenya, May 4 – The Nairobi County Government is urging Kenyans wishing to bury their kin in Nairobi to consider cremation as an option, as it is less expensive.
Health County Executive Hitan Majevda told Capital FM News that the cost of cremation ranges from Sh13,000 for adults and Sh6,000 for children.
“We are not calling for cremation but we are recommending. We do not force anybody to cremate because it is a very sensitive thing. We are recommending because it is very economical. There are no costs. Do you know How many funeral committees for people that I attend and how much money people collect during harrambees? When they are alive you don’t give them a penny,” he observed.
He stated that other than save the costs, it also takes up less space.
“Land is expensive. In Nairobi the county does not have space anymore. Lang’ata is full and we have no space for burial. So cremation for us is the only option as a county because we have no space. The Cost of cremation is Sh13,000 for an adult while for a child it is Sh6,000,” he explained.“The few burials you see in Lang’ata occasionally are spaces squeezed between two graves or they are temporary graves. Once the body has decomposed, you can use that space.”
He reiterated that cremation is not a policy in the county’s by laws but just a recommendation.
‘It is not a policy that you should go and cremate. it is optional but it is encouragement and you should learn from what the late Kenneth Matiba and Wangari Maathai did. It is a very simple process. Like the one we have at the county, there is an incinerator. The coffin goes in and once you press the button, it lights up,” he said.
He went further to outline the process of cremation which he stated saves grieving families a lot of hustle.
“Depending of the size of the body and the material of the coffin, it takes from four to ten hours for the entire process. The next day, the family collects the ashes in an urn and its weight is less than a kilo. Then it is interred depending on the wishes of the family,” he stated.
He stressed the need for families to honestly think about the process as it is currently being embraced by many prominent Kenyans.
“The choice is theirs. We are not imposing on anyone, we are not forcing anyone. Those who want to bury can continue with what they are doing but this is an option they have now. So many respected people are going for this option not onmly in Kenya but also in the world so we should discuss it openly,” he stated.
“Think of the families who get traumatized upon the death of a loved one, how much money they spend in burial. That money can be used for a good cause elsewhere. Personally I think it is an unnecessary expense.”