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Anticipated Completion of New Joburg Forensic Lab Set for June



new forensic lab

A new forensic lab in Joburg, the Johannesburg Forensic Pathology Service laboratory, will open soon. It will open its doors at the end of June at the Helen Joseph Hospital. Per Jacaranda FM, the Gauteng Department of Infrastructure Development is leading the project. The R588 million state-of-the-art facility has faced numerous delays. Originally slated to open four years ago, the project encountered setbacks attributed to the COVID-19 pandemic and disputes with contractors over building schedules, according to Victor Moreriane, a Gauteng Department of Infrastructure Development spokesperson. Moreriane stated that a new team of professional consultants was procured in November, and they have submitted a building schedule with the commitment to complete the work by June 30, 2024.

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The purpose of the new laboratory is to replace the Hillbrow Forensic Mortuary, which is considered unsuitable. The Hillbrow mortuary’s backlog has led to delays in burying loved ones for hundreds of Johannesburg residents. Nomantu Nkomo-Ralehoko, the Health and Wellness MEC in Gauteng, attributed the backlog at the mortuary to the high crime rate in the province. Despite the challenges faced by the department in completing the project, Moreriane affirmed that solutions have been found to avoid further delays. Terminating the contract with the underperforming professional consultants was one of the steps taken to address the issues as the department works towards the new June 2024 deadline.

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Picture: Unsplash / Louis Reed

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