All payments were concluded by 13 June, before the deadline of 19 June set by retired Deputy Chief Justice Dikgang Moseneke, who was chairing the arbitration.

“The office of the Premier paid a total sum of R159 460 000 to all the 134 claimants who were part of the Alternative Dispute Resolution Process,” the office of the Gauteng Premier David Makhura said.

In March, the arbitration awarded survivors and families of those who had died R1 million in constitutional damages and R200 000 in damages for emotional suffering and funeral expenses.

During the arbitration, it emerged that patients died of cold and hunger, dehydration and general lack of care.

READ MORE: Life Esidimeni families to get up to R1,2m each

The sick spent three months in facilities that had no trained staff nor funds to cater for them. The homes also had inadequate facilities and many patients without medical records.

At least 144 mentally ill patients died after the Gauteng Health Department moved about 1 700 patients from Life Esidimeni facilities to unsuitable NGO and state facilities in 2016.

Meanwhile, 28 patients are still missing.

– African News Agency