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To: Gauteng MEC of Health Qedani Mahlangu

Transparency and Timeous Resolutions with reference to the Life Esidimeni disaster

This campaign has ended.

Dear Member of the Executive Council (MEC) of Health

Honourable Qedani Mahlangu

We have been following the news reports with regards to the Life Esidimeni disaster with horror. The fact that 36 patients died while being in the care of the Department of Health is unacceptable.

We are aware of, and appreciate, the investigation that was launched into the deaths of these mental health patients by the Minister of Health and the National Department of Health (NDoH). We request that the results of this investigation be made public within the next two months. We are also aware that patients are still being treated at Precious Angels, where eight of the 36 patients are believed to have died. We request that these patients are immediately transferred to a facility which can adequately care for the patients while the investigation is ongoing.

Furthermore, the relocation of the 2,000 mental health patients should be investigated, and the NGO's evaluated to ensure that they are equipped to take care of the remaining 2,000 patients. Patients not receiving the care and treatment that they require and deserve, should immediately be transferred to facilities where they are appropriately cared for.

We appeal for full transparency and Timeous resolutions with reference to the Life Esidimeni disaster.

Kind Regards

Why is this important?

Mental health patients are one of our vulnerable populations, and needs care and protection. Care for those suffering from mental illnesses should be conducted in a dignified manner. The 2013-2020 South African Mental Health Policy Framework and Strategic highlights the fact that "the human rights of people with mental illness should be promoted and protected". The relocation of the Life Esidimeni patients are in stark contrast to the Mental Health Policy and the South African Disability Act. A number of reports have indicated that the necessary care and human rights treatment of these patients have not been met.

"Just because You can't Speak; doesn't Mean You don't have Anything to Say"

To provide for the care, treatment and rehabilitation of persons who are mentally ill; to set
out different procedures to be followed in the admission of such persons; to establish
Review Boards in respect of every health establishment; to determine their powers and
functions; to provide for the care and administration of the property of mentally ill
persons; to repeal certain laws; and to provide for matters connected therewith.
RECOGNISING that health is a state of physical, mental and social well-being and that mental
health services should be provided as part of primary, secondary and tertiary health services;
RECOGNISING that the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996 (Act No. 108 of
1996), prohibits against unfair discrimination of people with mental or other disabilities;
RECOGNISING that the person and property of a person with mental disorders or mental
disabilities, may at times require protection and that members of the public and their properties
may similarly require protection from people with mental disorders or mental disabilities; and
RECOGNISING further that there is a need to promote the provision of mental health care
services in a manner which promotes the maximum mental well-being of users of mental health
care services and communities in which they reside

Approved by Cabinet on 9 December 2015
The White Paper is a call to action for government, civil society and the private sector to
work together to ensure the socio-economic inclusion of persons with disabilities. We
therefore seek to create a caring and inclusive society that protects and develops the human
potential of its children, a society for all where persons with disabilities enjoy the same rights
as their fellow citizens, and where all citizens and institutions share equal responsibility for
building such a society.

“Everyone is equal before the law
and has the right to equal protection and benefit of the law.
Equality includes the full and equal enjoyment of all rights and freedoms.
To promote the achievement of equality, legislative and other measures
designed to protect or advance persons or categories of persons,
disadvantaged by unfair discrimination may be taken.”
The Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996


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2023-07-11 13:31:20 +0200

Petition is successful with 190 signatures

2016-09-20 09:01:23 +0200

100 signatures reached

2016-09-19 14:32:40 +0200

50 signatures reached

2016-09-19 10:32:18 +0200

25 signatures reached

2016-09-19 08:41:35 +0200

10 signatures reached