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Mayor Honey opens multi-purpose building in Manila North Cemetery; includes free wake chapels

MNC multi-purpose building
(right) Manila Mayor Honey Lacuna leads the groundbreaking of a multi-purpose building at the Manila North Cemetery which will have five chapels for holding of free wake, columbarium and crematorium. She was joined by ( from left ) MNC Director Yayay Castaneda, Vice Mayor Yul Servo, (standing, right) and (third from right) Councilor Fa Fugoso, among others. (JERRY S. TAN)

DISENTENG burulan bago dalhin sa huling hantungan.”

This, according to Manila Mayor Honey Lacuna, is what the city government of Manila would want to offer its less-privileged residents as she led the groundbreaking of the construction of a multi-purpose building at the Manila North Cemetery (MNC).

Lacuna, who was joined by Vice Mayor Yul Servo, MNC Director Yayay Castaneda, third district Councilors Fa Fugoso and Apple Nieto and barangay chairpersons also from the third district, said that the new building will be housing five chapels where the residents may hold the wake for their deceased loved ones for free.

The lady mayor lamented that due to lack of money to pay for a decent place, many residents hold wake in the streets.

“Kadalasan, nakikita natin ang ating mga kababayang namatay na nasa kalye lang po nakaburol at di mabigyan ng maayos na burulan. Nakakalungkot po ito dahil sa Maynila, gusto natin na sa huling hantungan ay may maayos na pagbuburulan,” she said.

The lady mayor also announced that the MNC will have a new crematorium facility, possibly within the month, based on the estimate given by Castaneda, who closed down the current crematorium facility due to its harmful effects on the environment.

“Sarado ngayon ang ating crematorium dahil napakaluma na po ng ating cremation facility at di na po tama na ito’y gamitin pa natin dahil meron na po itong nilalabas na maitim na usok na hindi po maganda para sa kapaligiran,” Lacuna explained.

It was learned from Castaneda that the new multi-purpose building will have four storeys. The ground floor will house the crematory equipment, a viewing area, lobby and office.

The second floor will have the two chapel units for free wakes while three more will be built at the third floor, which will also have a lobby. The columbarium will be at the fourth floor.

The wake chapels, Castaneda said, may be used free of charge by the residents on a first-come, first-served basis.

The columbarium, on the other hand, may be availed of on a five-year rental which Castaneda said will be made affordable.

Once the new crematorium is finished, Castaneda said that cremation for deaths related to COVID and other contagious illnesses will remain free while a minimal fee will be charged for those not covered by the exemption.

Itchie G. Cabayan
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