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Noakes hearing delayed

Noakes tribunal delayed again – to February 2016

The hearing against Professor Tim Noakes by the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA) has been delayed again over procedural issues and will continue next year.

This after proceedings, initially expected to run for seven days, ended with only witnesses for the complainant being heard on Monday – day six.

Committee chairperson Joan Adams said the hearing would resume on February 8 and run until February 17.

Noakes was charged with unprofessional conduct following a complaint to the HPCSA.

Earlier this year, Noakes, in a Twitter posting, advised a mother to wean her child on to low carbohydrate, high fat foods – commonly abbreviated as LCHF.

The tweet read: “Baby doesn’t eat the dairy and cauliflower. Just very healthy high fat breast milk. Key is to ween [sic] baby on to LCHF.”

According to the HPCSA, Noakes acted in a manner not in accordance with the norms and standards of the profession by providing “unconventional advice on breast feeding babies”.

The HPCSA was expected to call five witnesses, but on Monday announced an additional witness, bioethicist Professor Willem Pienaar.

He would testify during the February proceedings as Noakes’s team argued they had insufficient time to prepare to cross-examine the witness.

Noakes’s team planned to call on testimony from two international experts – New Zealand dietitian Caryn Zinn and Canadian professor Stephen Cunnane. Noakes was also expected to testify.

The HPCSA is paying for the hearing, estimated now to cost well over R1m.


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