THE Cebu City Legal Office (CLO) has recommended the closure of the cadaver storage facility of St. Bernard Funeral Homes on N. Bacalso Avenue, Barangay Basak San Nicolas, Cebu City for operating without permits.

In a letter submitted to Mayor Edgardo Labella on Monday, Aug. 23, 2021, the CLO said after a series of investigations done by the Cebu City Health Department, Business Permit and Licensing Office, Office of the Building Official and the Prevention, Restoration, Order, Beautification and Enhancement (Probe) team, it was found that there was no sanitary permit issued to the cadaver storage facility of St. Bernard Funeral Homes, and this is a violation of Presidential Decree (PD) 856, or the Sanitary Code of the Philippines.

The funeral home also violated PD 1096, or the Building Code of the Philippines, since the facility has no record of any building permit and occupancy permit.

The CLO also found out that the facility is operating without a business permit in the City.

The City Health Department also recommended to immediately dispose of the cadavers, stop the use of the abandoned structure for storage of cadavers, and stop using meat freezers for storing cadavers.

Vice Mayor Michael Rama earlier ordered the CLO to look into possible violations of St. Bernard Funeral Homes after 16 bodies were found in the building that was used as a morgue on Aug. 17, 2021.

Meanwhile, SJ Palomar, manager of St. Bernard Funeral Homes, said the closure of their cadaver storage facility would not disrupt their operations.

He said they had vacated the facility and “properly handled the remains” before the Cebu City Hall wrapped up its inquiry.

Palomar said they still have a morgue in their office in Barangay Mambaling. (MVE, JOB)