Tiego Ephraim Selebano wanted the High Court in Johannesburg to set aside a subpoena.
"I was completely shocked and could not comprehend the whole thing," said the health minister.
Health Ombudsman Malegapuru Makgoba had asked the Gauteng health department to move all mentally ill patients to adequate facilities by the middle of April.
Is this another Life Esidimeni disaster? Gauteng moved more than 90 vulnerable children to NGOs because of a Nehawu strikers' blockade.
The tribunal is headed by a retired judge, Justice Bernard Ngoepe.
The boards follow the death of at least 100 mental health patients in Gauteng after a disastrous attempt to save costs on care.
You deserve more than an apology, Cope MP tells families.
If you've ever been to a public health institution and have never been told that you cannot be helped because there's no medicine, then lucky you!
"I can safely say that the families need closure... They are not necessarily fighting with government but they want to get the truth."