Minister drops charges against Aids 'doc'

Kwazulu-Natal traditional healer Zeblon Gwala says he is pleased that charges laid against him by the DA have been dropped.

Gwala makes the controversial traditional uBhejane concoction used by people with HIV-Aids.

In 2006 the DA laid charges against Gwala for fraud and contravening the Medicines Act. The act stipulates that nobody may claim a product can cure an illness unless scientifically proven.

The DA expressed concern this week when it was informed by Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa that the charges had been dropped.

Key to the DA charges was the accusation that Gwala, by selling his traditional muti, was forcing people to choose between it and ARVs. His mixture sells for R400.

Gwala said he was happy because he could continue providing a service to sick people.

"This noise about my medicine had been going on for a long time. I don't know what the DA wants from me."

He says his product is registered with the Medicines Control Council. At the time of going to press, Sowetan was unable to verify his claim.

DA MP Mike Waters said: "We will be writing to the public prosecutor to provide information on how they arrived at the decision."

The police minister was unavailable for comment.