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Esidimeni hearing: ‘Health officials should be criminally charged’

Moelo Mofokeng has called for all the Gauteng Health Department officials involved in the disastrous project to be criminally charged.

Moelo Mofokeng, whose sister died at one of the NGOs after being transferred there from a Life Esidimeni facility, testifies at the arbitration hearing on 22 November 2017. Picture: Masego Rahlaga/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Yet another family member of one of the psychiatric patients who survived the Esidimeni tragedy has called for all the Gauteng Health Department officials involved in the disastrous project to be criminally charged.

Moelo Mofokeng testified at the arbitration hearings in Parktown on Wednesday.

Her sister, Maggie, was moved from an Esidimeni facility in 2016 along with 1,710 others.

Over 140 of the patients died after the Health Department transferred them to ill-equipped NGOs.

Mofokeng says she fought aggressively against patients being moved to the Takalani Home in Soweto because her sister had been raped by another patient when she was institutionalised there in 2002.

During another woman’s testimony, a few weeks ago, the arbitration heard how her sister was also sexually assaulted at the same facility last year after being moved there from Esidimeni.

Justice Moseneke then said he worries about how the government allowed male and female patients to be housed in the same wards.

Mofokeng says this is one of the many reasons why some government officials should be criminally charged.

“I wish for every person who was part of this project to be arrested. This is a criminal offence.”

On the stand followed Alfred Rasidzoge, who works at one of the mortuaries where the corpses of patients were found badly decomposed.

WATCH: Esidimeni: Families of victims give testimony

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)