Godfrey Okoye University (GOUNI), Enugu, has given families of 33 corpses abandoned in its hospital mortuary 21 days to evacuate them.
The Vice-Chancellor of the university, Prof. Christian Anieke, stated this at a media briefing on Sunday in Enugu.
He said the institution would be forced to conduct a mass burial for the dead persons if their families failed to claim them at the end of the ultimatum.
The vice-chancellor added that some of the corpses had been in the mortuary for more than 18 years.
He stressed that the ultimatum given by the management on November 13 became necessary to enable the university to renovate the mortuary.
Anieke said: “We have gotten court injunction to carry out the mass burial of the 33 abandoned corpses in our teaching hospital morgue.
“Some of the corpses have been in the mortuary for more than 18 years and it is quite challenging as we want to renovate and make the hospital a befitting one for a teaching hospital.
“I am appealing to those who have corpses in the mortuary to come and remove them.
“We are talking about human beings here and not animals. Go and check if your relationship is there.”
He noted that in Igbo tradition, families have to give a befitting burial to the deceased.
“It is believed that if the dead persons are not given befitting burial it will have bad consequences on the family,’’ the VC concluded.
In his remarks, the Chief Medical Director of the teaching hospital, Prof. Cajetan Nwadinigwe, said many of the corpses did not have name tags, while about 14 of them bore the same name.