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Esidimeni Tragedy: Mahlangu casts blame on Selebano, Manamela

Qedani Mahlangu says doctor Barney Selebano approved the patient transfer project and doctor Makgabo Manamela did not let her know about the problems encountered during the moves.

Former Gauteng Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu testifies at the Life Esidimeni hearing on 22 January 2018 in Parktown. Picture: AFP.

JOHANNESBURG - Former Gauteng Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu has cast blame on the department’s former head as well as its director of mental health services, for all the wrongs that occurred in the Esidimeni project which led to the deaths of 143 psychiatric patients.

Mahlangu is testifying at the arbitration hearings in Parktown on Monday, where the families of those who died and those who survived have filled the marquee to capacity.

She says doctor Barney Selebano approved the patient transfer project and doctor Makgabo Manamela did not let her know about the problems encountered during the moves.

Both Selebano and Manamela resigned days apart last week.

Mahlangu has told retired deputy chief justice Dikgang Moseneke that Selebano and Manamela lied to her and Gauteng Premier David Makhura about the Esidimeni project plan.

Both Selebano and Manamela testified last year and said the former health MEC pressurised them to go ahead with the deadly project.

However, Mahlangu says she was convinced by them and trusted their judgement as professional doctors.

Mahlangu says Selebano was the one who approved the plan.

Her testimony continues.

WATCH: Qedani Mahlangu begins testimony