WATCH: Mental health expert to testify at Esidimeni hearings


Former Gauteng Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu appears to be yet another politician refusing to take responsibility.


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JOHANNESBURG - A mental health expert took the stand at the Life Esidimeni arbitration hearings on Friday.

On Thursday, former Gauteng Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu told the hearings that her character was being attacked.

Advocate Lila Crouse, for Legal Aid South Africa, and Mahlangu butted heads for the better part of the day to the point of Mahlangu asking to express herself in isiZulu.

WATCH: Mahlangu continues her testimony in Esidimeni hearings

However, she abandoned the aid of the interpreter within five minutes.

"I am getting an impression that I am here in the arbitration about my character than anything else.

"If this is about my character then I should have a lawyer. I am getting uncomfortable," Mahlangu said.

Retired deputy chief justice Dikgang Moseneke told Mahlangu that his work is to chair the arbitration and assured her he would step in if she was being treated unfairly.

A total of 143 psychiatric patients died after being moved from Life Esidimeni facilities to unlicensed NGOs.