City Parks prioritises cemetery maintenance after the seasonal rains

Avalon Cemetery.

Johannesburg City Parks and Zoo (JCPZ), the custodians of open spaces including cemeteries, have deployed additional resources from its parks maintenance units and appointed external contractors to address service delivery shortfalls at thirteen (13) of the City’s thirty-two (32) cemeteries.

Work in earnest commenced over the weekend at Westpark Cemetery. The internal maintenance teams have cut large sections of the 100-hectare cemetery, however, the more intricate work around tombstones and the removal of grass are being undertaken by the contractors.


City Parks workers doing maintenance.


Similar maintenance operations are being carried out in Avalon, Alexandra, Olifantsvlei, Waterval in Midrand, Diepsloot, Nancefield, New Roodepoort, Newclare, Braamfontein, Brixton, Lenasia, Doornkop and the Panorama cemeteries.

Regional teams together with appointed contractors are working tirelessly to ensure that all seasonal backlogs stemming from the heavy rains are resolved by May.

The Member of the Mayoral Committee for Community Development in the City of Joburg, Councillor Nonhlanhla Sifumba extended apologies on behalf of Johannesburg City Parks and Zoo.



“I regret the state of neglect that is evident in the last resting places of the loved ones of the city. I had a meeting with the relevant operations personnel and requested that they resolve the backlogs as a matter of urgency.

“It cannot be that this government makes a commitment to offering services with pride, and we have cemeteries looking like they have been during the rainy seasons,” said Sifumba.

Sifumba also noted that she appreciates that some work had been cancelled due to heavy rains, but has pleaded with JCPZ to adhere to the maintenance schedules. Currently, an annual budget of R3.35m has been ring-fenced for horticultural services within the 32 cemeteries in the city.


A City Parks employee at work.


“This is a far cry from the amount required to align with best practices, but if it is used effectively and efficiently, it will make a difference” stated Sifumba.

“As graves are sacred, and belong to the families I am appealing to families to maintain the graves of loved ones where possible, as the bylaws in the city place the onus on families to maintain damaged headstones, broken memorials, remove decaying plants and weeds, replace plaques and ensure that all graves are well kept,” stated Sifumba.

Residents with service delivery concerns regarding cemetery maintenance in the city can direct all their complaints to the Cemeteries Manager, Mr Reggie Moloi on 011 712-6714 or email [email protected] or call the Joburg Connect Call Centre on 011 375-5555.





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