Gauteng health official Levy Mosenogi breaks down during Esidimeni hearings

Levy Mosenogi was the man tasked with leading the project to relocate almost 2000 psychiatric patients to various NGO's in 2016.

A collage of the families of the victims of the Life Esidimeni tragedy with pictures of the loved ones that they lost. Picture: @LifeEsidimeni/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG - A Gauteng health official has broken down on the stand at the Life Esidimeni hearings while describing how he fought to keep a centre that was caring for children open.

Levy Mosenogi was the man tasked with leading the project to relocate almost 2,000 psychiatric patients to various NGOs in 2016.

He's back on the witness stand on Tuesday at the formal inquest into the deaths of over 140 patients that died after the disastrous move.

Mosenogi said he had sleepless nights about the closure of the Baneng Care Centre, which looked after the most vulnerable children.

He said the situation reminded him of his disabled younger brother.

"I reflected back because my younger brother was also severely disabled. I used to go visit at a facility he was in, I would sit with him and when I wanted to go, he would hold on to my hand because he couldn't even speak. So, it was the same picture I had with Baneng - that's why I fought so much for Baneng to not be closed."