The grave of the late singer who died of multple sclerosis in 2014 has been located. It was earlier declared missing.
The burial place of Zara Gretti has been located according to a new report.
Tomorrow Saturday, March 28, 2015, marks exactly one year since fast rising, Nigerian music act, Margaret Mary Oluwatoyin Ejiro Joseph, popularly known as Zara Gretti passed on after losing her battle for life with Multiple Sclerosis.
Her body was laid to rest at the public section of the Ikoyi Cemetery, Lagos on April 4, 2014. Controversy over her grave On a first visit to the site of her burial last Thursday, March 19, 2015, an official at the Ikoyi Cemetery identified simply as Sule, went through the cemetery records, and confirmed that indeed Zara was buried on the grounds.
He obtained the location of the grave from the same records and a search was carried out. After hours of searching the entire area for the grave without success, he concluded that the grave was ‘missing,’ but promised to go back later for a more thorough check and revert. He never did. Sadly, it also turns out that Sule was wrong.
A second visit to the cemetery on Wednesday, March 25, 2015 by reporters from NET has revealed that while he was right about the section he indicated via their records, he didn’t get the exact location of the grave correctly, or even know what it looked like.
A senior official of the cemetery, who identified himself simply as Akeem, on the second visit, apologized on behalf of the authorities, and led the way straight to her grave.
Akeem, after apologizing for the initial mix-up, stated that Sule would never have found the grave even if he had checked the right place because the grave wasn’t properly marked. Zara’s full name (Margaret Mary Joseph) was just hand-scribbled at the foot of the grave and would be barely visible for someone who didn’t know that her remains were buried in that particular vault.
Zara’s grave is located at Gate 5, Right Portion 2, Vault F31. According to him, he (Akeem) personally handled Zara’s burial in 2014. He added that the family promised to contact him later to the grave properly marked, but never did till date. “I don’t even know who eventually came to scribble her name on the vault like this here sef,’"he stated.
The Joseph family had purchased the vault used for her burial a long time ago, and two other relatives (Hilaria and Cyprian Joseph) had been buried there before Zara.
The marble mantle head on the vault presently carries their inscription alone. The three-layer vault purchased by the Joseph family currently goes for N450k at the Ikoyi Cemetery.
Akeem also disclosed that a Certificate of Occupancy (C-of-O) is issued to any family that buys any type of vault at the cemetery.
“On no account is it possible for anybody not in possession of this document to have a body exhumed, or another body buried. Even if it’s the very same person that came to pay for the vault, one must produce this certificate before we can allow them to do anything on a grave”, he said.