R65m in unpaid Life Esidimeni compensation

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The legal firm that acts on behalf of 101 families of the victims of the Life Esidimeni tragedy have sent a letter of demand over the payment of some R65m to its clients.

Ulrich Roux and Associates law firm says it is yet to set a date to meet with the Gauteng government and reach a settlement agreement on the monies owed to the families of the victims of Life Esidimeni. It sent a letter of demand to Premier David Makhura on 28 July, giving the office a deadline of 14 August to make payment of over R65m to its clients.

Each claimant was due to receive more than R1m each, as awarded by retired Deputy Chief Justice Dikgang Moseneke following arbitration in 2018. Ulrich Roux told News24 his office received a letter from the provincial government on Thursday afternoon (13 August) requesting a meeting in an attempt to reach an amicable settlement.

“So, we will not be instituting any action prior to this meeting. We will first attend the meeting with the government and hopefully we can reach an amicable settlement which will of course be to the benefit of our clients. They are of course lawfully entitled to the payments which we have claimed on their behalf,” Roux said.

Gauteng provincial spokesperson Thabo Masebe reportedly told News24 that the Premier's office had responded to the law firm's letter of demand because it wanted to take it through processes it had followed since receiving the new set of claims. Masebe said there had been an agreement in place that claimants' compensation would be split into two; a 50% portion going directly to their accounts and another to a trust for surviving mental healthcare users.

But Roux said there was no such agreement made with the clients which the law firm acts on behalf of.


Full News24 report

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