South African businessman Andre Hanekom and his wife, Francis

Durban – It will be up to the family of deceased businessman André Hanekom to decide if a report into the circumstances surrounding his death will be made public, the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (Dirco) said on Thursday night.

This comes after the 62-year-old's remains were repatriated to South Africa on Thursday, finally reaching the country in the early evening.

Hanekom died after months in police custody in a Mozambique hospital last week, before he was set to stand trial on terrorism charges.

Dirco Minister Lindiwe Sisulu has directed South Africa’s high commissioner to Mozambique to engage the country’s authorities to provide a report on the circumstances surrounding Hanekom’s death.

“The high commissioner and Mozambique authorities are busy with the report. When it is done, the family will decide if it must be made public or not,” Dirco spokesperson Ndivuwo Mabaya told African News Agency (ANA) on Thursday night.

Mozambican authorities detained Hanekom last year for alleged terrorist activity in the Cabo Delgado province, from where he ran his business.

Hanekom’s family has repeatedly denied allegations of any wrongdoing by the businessman.

Instead, said his wife Francis – a former South African intensive care nurse – she believed her husband had been poisoned to cover up possible torture he endured while being questioned in detention.

Hanekom's remains will now undergo an independent autopsy. The post-mortem examination performed in Mozambique named the cause of death as encephalopathy hypoxia (a brain injury caused by oxygen deprivation to the brain).

African News Agency (ANA)