Outa has expressed shock and outrage at Government’s extreme cynicism and profligacy in its approach to the nuclear related court proceedings in Cape Town on Tuesday. The case, brought by Earth Life Africa (ELA) and the South African Faith Communities Environmental Institute (SAFCEI), related inter alia to the possible unlawfulness of the Ministerial Determination underpinning the procurement of 9.6 GW of nuclear energy at an estimated cost of ZAR 1 trillion.
The case was postponed with the Department of Energy tendering the wasted legal costs of the applicants, estimated by OUTA to be in the range of R5 – 10 million. The reason for the postponement was a fresh Ministerial Determination issued by the Minister of Energy, seeking to cure the defects of the original determination of December 2013, by making Eskom the procurer of the new Nuclear Energy build program as opposed to the Department of Energy. This was handed into Court on the morning of the trial without notice, even though the Minister signed it over a week ago.
“Eskom’s actions is an expression of disrespect for the democratic and legal process”, commented Ted Blom, OUTA’s Portfolio Director of Energy. “A strong chance existed that the court would have found the original determination to be illegal and set aside for a number of reasons, one being the lack of a meaningful public consultation processes. This time around, the Government and Eskom have chosen to wilfully deny the public a chance to comment on the