Maimane breaks silence on Zille’s tweet: I don’t support her views

Hellen Zille said while it was good that Esidimeni families will be compensated for deaths of loved ones, she wanted to know what they had done to raise the alarm about their suffering before they died.

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JOHANNESBURG - Democratic Alliance (DA) leader Mmusi Maimane has reacted to Western Cape Premier Helen Zille’s tweet about the families of the victims of the Life Esidimeni tragedy, saying he doesn’t support her views.

In a tweet on Wednesday morning, Zille said while it was good that the families will now be compensated by the Gauteng government for the deaths of their loved ones, she wanted to know what they had done to raise the alarm about their suffering before they died.

One hundred and forty-four patients died after the department moved them from Life Esidimeni facilities to ill-equipped and illegal NGOs.

Maimane says the families need to be supported.

“The families of those who were left behind understood the pain they went through, and when you surrender yourself to a mental health institution often you find that those families are left powerless. So, I stand with the families and say they should be supported.”

At the same time, civil society group Unite Behind’s Zackie Achmat has confirmed that he’ll be laying a complaint with the Human Rights Commission against the Western Cape Premier.