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Life Esidimeni families to be compensated

JOHANNESBURG, February 8  – Civil society grouping Section 27 and union Solidarity who represent some of the families of the mentally ill patients who died after the botched transfer from Life Esidimeni facilities into the care of ill-equipped non-governmental organisations across Gauteng, have agreed with the State that families will receive R200,000 as compensation.

Section 27 legal representative, Advocate Adila Hassim, said R180,000 was intended for emotional shock, while R20 000 was for funeral arrangements. She said counselling will also be offered.

Solidarity also reached the same agreements as Section 27.

Advocate Lilla Crouse, for Legal Aid South Africa, however, said they would not be part of Thursday’s proceedings as they have not yet reached an agreement with the government.

Advocate Tebogo Hutamo, representing the State, confirmed Crouse’s statement but added that the State had made an offer of counselling to the families represented by Legal Aid SA.

On Tuesday, Health Ombudsman Professor Malegapuru Makgoba clarified that four people out of the 144 who were included in the number of patients who died during the botched project, will not be part of the Life Esidimeni alternative dispute process.

On the matter of a further 12 people who died and were suspected to be part of the official toll, Hutamo said only one patient qualified to be added to the arbitration process.

– African News Agency (ANA)

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