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Creecy to testify at Esidimeni hearings on Health Dept's financial affairs

Gauteng Finance MEC Barbara Creecy is expected to testify after the department cited financial constraints for termination of its contract with Life Esidimeni.

FILE: Gauteng Finance MEC Barbara Creecy. Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Gauteng Finance MEC Barbara Creecy has been added to the list of witnesses at the Life Esidimeni arbitration hearings.

Creecy is expected to give insights into the financial affairs of the province’s Health Department after it cited financial constraints as the reason for the termination of its contract with Life Esidimeni.

The chaotic patient transfer project resulted in the deaths of at least 143 patients at illegal NGOs.

The Gauteng Health Department ended its contract with Life Esidimeni, saying it was due to a lack of funds but glaring contradictions have been raised by some witnesses.

During his testimony last year, the group’s former CEO Dr Morgan Mkhatshwa said he suggested to former health MEC Qedani Mahlangu that government buy Esidimeni’s psychiatric facilities but was told there was simply no money for that.

This was in stark contrast to what the department’s Chief Director of Planning and Research Levy Mosenogi had said that he was surprised to see in the budget that they could, in fact, afford the facilities.

Mahlangu herself admitted this week that the department ended up incurring more costs after cutting ties with Esidimeni.

Justice Dikgang Moseneke has now decided that Creecy should be called to the witness stand as finance MEC to clear these discrepancies.

“We certainly will have MEC Barbara Creecy coming.”

Creecy is expected to testify next Tuesday.

WATCH: #LifeEsidimeni: Qedani Mahlangu on the stand for 3rd day