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Esidimeni committee slams re-election of Qedani Mahlangu to ANC PEC

Qedani Mahlangu as Health MEC oversaw the disastrous and deadly relocation project in which at least 144 psychiatric patients died in Gauteng.

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

JOHANNESBURG - The Life Esidimeni committee, which represents the families of those who died in the tragedy, says it's shocked and enraged by Qedani Mahlangu's re-election to the African National Congress (ANC)'s provincial executive committee (PEC).

Mahlangu as Health MEC oversaw the disastrous and deadly relocation project in which at least 144 psychiatric patients died in Gauteng.

The committee says in allowing her to participate in the PEC, the ANC is effectively condoning the most heinous acts perpetrated under her watch.

Committee member Christine Nxumalo said: “For us, it simply means people who do wrong are not held accountable and basically are re-elected into leadership. It makes no sense to an ordinary person if you’ve done such a heinous task while you were employed [at the Department of Health].”

The committee Mahlangu should not be eligible for election in any political structures.

Nxumalo added: “What we believe is that right after the arbitration hearing, they should’ve hauled her before the integrity committee, but they didn’t because they knew at some point they’re going to the elective conference. They should’ve done that, but they didn’t.”

LISTEN: Lying In State: The Life Esidimeni tragedy - The cost of cost-cutting

(Edited by Winnie Theletsane)