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Families of Life Esidimeni patients hope inquest will lead to criminal prosecutions

15 July 2021, 11:00 PM  |  SABC  | 

The families of the 144 mental health patients who lost their lives in the Life Esidimeni tragedy are hoping that the inquest will lead to criminal prosecutions.

The formal inquest hearing is expected to begin next week at the Pretoria High Court.

The matter will be heard virtually due to COVID-19 regulations.

It comes six years after the tragic deaths of the mental health patients.

They were a result of government’s 2015 decision to move 1 700 psychiatric patients from private hospital group, Life Esidimeni, to state facilities and NGOs.

The decision was announced by then Gauteng Health MEC, Qedani Mahlangu, saying the province was terminating its contract with the institution, resulting in scores of patients dying, many through allegations of neglect.

The Pretoria High Court will now hear evidence from families of the deceased, among others.

 Claimants who qualify have still not been paid:

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