by Jack Bloom MPL – DA Gauteng Shadow Health MEC
Former Gauteng Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu has substantial wealth that should be attached to pay some of the R159 million arbitration award for the suffering and deaths of Life Esidimeni patients.
The Democratic Alliance has established that Mahlangu cashed in her R16 million pension fund when she resigned in February last year, leaving her with a nest egg of about R11 million after tax.
She lives in an property in Bedfordview which is worth about R5 million and recently paid R3.9 million for a property in the Johannesburg suburb of Kensington, apparently to be developed as an investment.
Last year she paid for a university course in England, and lived there for several months, which must have cost about half a million rand.
Mahlangu is even able to afford two professional bodyguards who drive and escort her, which costs about R50 000 a month.
Incredibly, she has even staged a political comeback with her re-election to the ANC’s Provincial Executive Committee in Gauteng.
Last week I wrote to Premier David Makhura to request him to use the Apportionment of Damages Act to ensure that Mahlangu and two former senior health officials pay a share of the R159 million Esidimeni arbitration award.
Makhura has not yet responded, but if he fails to force her to pay from her own pocket it will show that he is not serious about holding her to account for the Esidimeni disaster.
Her assets are probably worth more than R20 million in total which should be seized by court action to pay a fair share of the financial recompense to Esidimeni victims.
Ultimately she must appear in court for her crimes, but action can be taken now to curb her luxurious lifestyle so that taxpayers don’t have to foot the total bill for her cruel and negligent deeds.