Mourning families await mortuary backlog

The families of six men whose deaths are being investigated are still awaiting for their loved ones' bodies to be released from the mortuary at the Tupua Tamasese Meaole Hospital in Motootua.

Workers in the Ministry of Health (M.O.H.), who spoke to the Observer on the condition of anonymity, confirmed that there are six bodies at the morgue.

All six cases involve men; and all six are victims of alleged crimes being probed by the Ministry of Police and prosecuted by the A.G.’s office. 

One body has been kept at the morgue for as long as six months.

What caused their deaths is not clear.

Authorities have okayed the release of one man’s body but a family member of the deceased, who is not in the country, is yet to approve the release. 

The family member is currently in the United States.

The identities of the deceased men remain unknown.

It is also not clear if any suspects have been charged in connection with the deaths of the six men.

Hinauri Leaupepe-Ngau Chun, who heads the mortuary referred the Observer to Health Director-General Leausa Dr. Take Naseri.

The A.G.'s Office has also been contacted for comments.

No response was received from either the A.G.'s Office or the Director-General as of press time Monday afternoon.

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