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Legalbrief   |   your legal news hub Monday 18 February 2019

No nuclear deal with Russians, Radebe confirms

There was no longer a deal with the Russians to procure for the development of nuclear energy, South Africa's Minister of Energy Jeff Radebe reportedly told eNCA. In an interview on the network's The Fix show, Radebe said he was of the view that government did not appeal the court ruling in 2017 which invalidated the nuclear deal at that time, reports Fin24. The energy portfolio has seen unparalleled instability with at least five Ministers of Energy in the past eight years, and a subsequent lack of clarity as to whether the Intergovernmental Framework Agreement which mentioned nuclear would still be pursued and what role nuclear would play in the energy mix. Interviewer Karima Brown asked Radebe for clarity on the status of the nuclear deal, in light of Deputy President David Mabuza's official visit to the Russian Federation in May and the Brics summit taking place in Johannesburg last week. Radebe responded: 'That question was decided by the High Court in the Western Cape last year, where the submission of the intergovernmental agreement of Russia, the US and South Korea was tested in court. The court decided the submission was unconstitutional, unlawful and set it aside,' said Radebe. It was back to square one and the pending Integrated Resource Plan would determine the role of nuclear in the energy mix, Radebe said. He said despite the fact that Intergovernmental Framework agreements were signed long ago, these agreements could not be followed if invalidated by courts and could not be implemented without being ratified in Parliament.