SIU authorised to investigate health department and 'Life Esidimeni' NGOs - Zuma

2017-07-04 17:22
President Jacob Zuma waves during the ANC policy conference in Johannesburg. (Themba Hadebe, AP)

President Jacob Zuma waves during the ANC policy conference in Johannesburg. (Themba Hadebe, AP)

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Johannesburg – President Jacob Zuma has signed a proclamation allowing the Special Investigations Unit (SIU) to investigate allegations against Gauteng’s provincial department of health, according to a statement from the Presidency.

NGOs were paid "in a manner that was not fair, transparent, equitable and contrary to applicable legislation" in their procurement.

Also read: Life Esidimeni families concerned about progress on ombudsman’s recommendations

Any non-performance on the part of the 28 NGOs will also be looked into, as well as any unlawful irregular or unapproved acquisitive act, transaction, measure or practice that has a bearing on state property, the statement said. 

This comes after the deaths of more than 100 mental health patients in the province between May and June 2016.

In February, Professor Malegapuru Makgoba revealed in a report that 94 patients had died after being transferred from Life Healthcare Esidimeni to various NGOs across Gauteng due to cost-cutting measures. The report also found that several human rights were violated in the process. Initially, Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu said that only 36 patients had died, but the number was found to be higher in December, sky-rocketing to more than 100 by mid-February 2017.

Also read: Home takes Gauteng health department to court over R2m debt

Read more on:    jacob zuma  |  johannesburg  |  life esidemeni

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