OPINION

Former Health MEC to appear at Esidimeni hearings – Jack Bloom

DA MPL says Qedani Mahlangu's absence has undermined the whole purpose of the inquiry

Former Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu to appear at Esidimeni hearings

24 October 2017

It is gratifying that former Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu now says that she will testify before the Esidimeni arbitration hearings. I have no doubt that this is because her whereabouts have been discovered and the public outrage at her absence.

I welcome the insistence by Justice Dikgang Moseneke that she should appear together with Head of Department Barney Selebano and the Chief Director: Mental Health Makgabo Manamela.

Their absence has undermined the purpose of these hearings to uncover the full truth behind the deaths of the mental health patients.

Relatives of the deceased have faced further trauma at these hearings because the key people involved have not been summonsed to account for their actions.

I agree with Justice Moseneke that the hearings should not end until Mahlangu and her two top officials have all appeared.

It is astonishing that the state legal advisers thought they could get away without their participation.

Issued by Jack Bloom, DA Gauteng Shadow Health MEC, 24 October 2017