Durban – A KwaMashu man who was declared dead at an accident scene on Monday night and taken to a Phoenix mortuary, was found breathing the next day when his family went to view his body.
Shocked mortuary staff rushed Msizi Mkhize, 28, to Mahatma Gandhi Hospital, but he died about five hours later.
Mkhize was hit by a car while walking home with a friend on Monday evening, according to his sister, Hlobisile.
He was allegedly declared dead at the scene by paramedics.
His family believe the paramedics were negligent.
“We want to know who declared him dead. Is that person experienced enough to handle and make decisions in such situations?” asked Hlobisile.
“Somewhere, somehow someone did not do their job. We want a full explanation from all concerned,” she said.
Her father, Peter Mkhize said, “I have no words to express how I feel about what happened to my child. To spend the entire night and morning in the mortuary refrigerator is wrong.
“That day will forever be etched in my mind. Allow us as a family to bury our son and thereafter we can sit down and talk about our experience in detail,” he appealed.
Dr Rishigen Viranna, a general practitioner and DA MPL, on Wednesday called for a full investigation into the “horror incident at Durban’s Phoenix mortuary”.
“There is a concept in emergency medicine care known as the ‘Golden Hour’, where after trauma a patient has the best chance of good outcome if hospital or medical treatment is received within the first hour.
“This did not occur in this case. However, the true cause of death will be determined after a post-mortem has been completed,” he said.