Tag Archives: SAFCEI

We had a victory, but we still need your help —

SAFCEI, 2 December, 2017

A report-back from SAFCEI:


Yesterday, we were back in court to stop the latest Minister of Energy, David Mahlobo, from fast tracking an unconstitutional nuclear deal.

Affidavits were handed up in the Court by counsel from Mahlobo, Eskom, and the acting Director-General of the Department of Energy stating that they will take no steps to procure new nuclear energy, without a lawful determination that the new nuclear energy is in fact required. Read more about what happened in court here. This is an ongoing case, and we are watching what the government does next.
Now we need your help!
Can you chip in to help us cover the costs of yesterday’s nuclear court case victory?

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SAFCEI and Earthlife Africa, 9 November, 2017.

Yesterday, the Southern African Faith Communities’ Environment Institute (SAFCEI) and
Earthlife Africa Johannesburg (ELA-JHB) issued letters to the Ministers of Energy and
Public Enterprises, Eskom and the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (NERSA). The
organisations have called on Minister Mahlobo and Eskom to immediately halt the nuclear
tender process, as outlined by the judgement decided in the Western Cape High Court in
April 2017.
This urgent call is underlined by the High Court judgement, which holds that any decision
made by South Africa’s Minister of Energy about new electricity generation, must be done
in conjunction with NERSA, through a lawful and procedurally fair Section 34
determination. This determination would have to specify why new nuclear energy
electricity generation is needed so urgently and what percentage of South Africa’s energy
mix it would fulfil.

According to Liziwe McDaid of SAFCEI, current news reports which highlight the Minister of
Energy David Mahlobo’s unexplained fast-tracking of the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) by
4 months at the expense of clarity and certainty exacerbate concerns about the process.
In circumstances where the Minister of Finance Malusi Gigaba stated that that the South
African economy cannot afford nuclear currently, nor does the country need new intensive
energy production, Eskom’s readiness to commence the nuclear tender process
immediately upon IRP approval is cause for alarm.

“We cannot ignore the many serious allegations of state capture and irregular
procurement processes by senior Eskom officials at the parastatal which is currently under
scrutiny by Parliament’s Public Enterprises Committee,” says McDaid.

Makoma Lekalakala of ELA–JHB says that the High Court decision emphasises public
participation as part of the Section 34 determination processes. “Clarity and transparency
is needed with regard to procurement of energy and its related processes, including the
negotiation or renegotiation of International Governmental Agreements (IGAs).”

Should Eskom not provide this undertaking by Monday 13 th November 2017, SAFCEI and
ELA-JHB will assume that Eskom is determined to go ahead without following legal and
constitutional Section 34 determination. An urgent application to the High Court may be
sought as urgent relief to ensure that the High Court judgment is respected and that
government acts openly and transparently. Both SAFCEI and ELA-JHB are members of a
Campaign for a Just Energy Future, a national movement geared at mobilising South
African citizens to hold government accountable for its energy decisionsENDS

Issued by Erna Curry and Natasha Adonis, on behalf of SAFCEI and ELA-JHB.
For more information and interviews, contact:
 Liz McDaid 0827315643 /liziwe@mweb.co.za
 Erna Curry SAFCEI 0744-661- 238 / erna@safcei.org.za
 Natasha Adonis 0797-999- 654 / adonisnatasha@yahoo.co.uk

GroundUp: Eskom will not oppose anti-nuke deal litigation

Groundup, Daily Maverick, 6 February, 2017.

Litigants say making Eskom the nuclear procurer raises serious questions about the financial implications and price of electricity, and should have been open to public scrutiny. The court ordered a postponement to February 22 to allow litigants to examine new developments. By Melanie Gosling for GROUNDUP.

First published by GroundUp

Eskom will not oppose court action challenging the legality of government decisions around the procurement process for a fleet of new nuclear reactors. The utility said in papers filed in the Western Cape High Court that it would abide by the court’s decision in this matter.

This is the latest development in court action by NGOs Earthlife Africa and the Southern African Faith Communities’ Environment Institute, which are taking the government to court over what they claim are unlawful decisions around the nuclear procurement process.

Eskom’s decision not to enter the legal fray comes after it was added as a respondent in the court proceedings last week. This was done after Cabinet had decided during court proceedings late last year that Eskom, not the Department of Energy, would now be in charge of procuring new nukes.

Litigants learned about this change at the hearing on December 13 when the government’s legal team told the court that Energy Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson had made a new determination under the Electricity Regulation Act, designating Eskom as the procurer of the 9600MW of new nuclear plants, “making the utility responsible for the largest procurement in South Africa’s history”, papers said.

Litigants say making Eskom the nuclear procurer raises serious questions about the financial implications and price of electricity, and should have been open to public scrutiny. The court ordered a postponement to February 22 to allow litigants to examine this new development.

Although both NGOs are anti-nuclear, they are not asking the court to decide on the merits of nuclear power, nor whether South Africa needs it, but whether government’s decisions around the nuclear procurement programme are lawful and in keeping with the Constitution, and whether the South African public, part of a participatory democracy, should have been allowed to make representations on the nuclear procurement process.

Here is the full article

Date set for nuclear procurement case

Engineering News, 22 September, 2016.

A high Court hearing into an application brought by the Southern African Faith Communities’ Environment Institute (Safcei) and Earthlife Africa Johannesburg relating to the legality of South Africa’s nuclear procurement process has been set down for December 13 and 14.

(EG-SA Ed note: If I were a cynic I would think that this date was chosen so a to minimise the attention the case would get – but better late than never!)

The two organisations question the legality of the process followed by government and want the court to put a halt to any non-transparent attempt to procure 9 600 MW of new nuclear capacity.

Energy Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson has indicated that a nuclear request for proposal will be released on September 30, but has refused to release documents relating to its procurement preparations to the Democratic Alliance, the official opposition.

“We are very pleased that the court understands the urgency of this matter at a critical stage in South Africa’s energy decision-making process, and appreciates that it is so much in the public’s interest”, Safcei energy adviser Liz McDaid said in a statement. 

Apologies, you can’t click here for the full article, because this is the full article! Not sure why Creamer chose to give so much coverage to Eksom’s funding fantasy and so little to the matter of inappropriate procurement?

Nuclear Energy and climate change

SAFCEI, Bishop Geoff Davies, October, 2014.

In the face of potential catastrophe because of climate change,  Mary Robinson, in her Desmond Tutu Peace lecture, called for a “change to our economic systems – how we produce energy, how we use our land and other natural resources, how we transport people and goods, and how we live, eat and work – if we are to survive.”

At the same time, mining companies at the Joburg Mining Indaba said that we need to mechanise to stay competitive.  As with agriculture, in mechanising we lose hundreds and thousands of jobs. Mechanising leads to a demand for more capital intensive energy.  Meanwhile, millions of young people leave school without any skills.

To overcome climate change and to reduce inequality and poverty, we must develop the capacity of our greatest asset – our people. Hence the call for people centred and people oriented development, with appropriate technology that uses people power, rather than over mechanisation which will do people out of jobs and emit more carbon.

So government, please don’t invest our valuable and scarce resources in nuclear energy. Invest in equipping and skilling our people to overcome inequality and poverty and fulfil service delivery promises.


Bishop Geoff Davies t + 27 21 701 8145 geoff.davies@safcei.org.za
C + 27 83 754 5275 PO Box 106, Kalk Bay, 7990, South Africa