Zuma will NOT negotiate nuclear agreements alone

Presidency addresses nuclear agreement reports

Pretoria – Media reports that President Jacob Zuma has negotiated or will negotiate and conclude nuclear power agreements alone are incorrect.

In a statement released on Friday, the Presidency said President Zuma works with Cabinet on the matter.

In the State of the Nation Address in June, President Zuma announced that the country would prioritise energy security and would pursue an energy mix including coal, nuclear, shale gas and renewable energy.

In the Presidency Budget Vote speech in July, the President announced the establishment of the Cabinet Energy Security Sub-Committee that would oversee the development of the energy mix.

The Committee replaced the National Nuclear Energy Executive Coordinating Committee (NNEECC). This committee was initially chaired by former Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe.

The composition and leadership of the committee was changed in April 2013 following a recommendation by the Committee. President Zuma assumed leadership.

“Some media houses have complained about the Cabinet decision to change the leadership of the committee.

“It must be pointed out as well that the President can chair any committee of Cabinet and may also delegate the chairing of committees should he so decide,” said the Presidency’s statement.

The Cabinet Energy Security Sub-Committee comprises the following Ministries:

  • Energy
  • International Relations and Cooperation
  • Public Enterprises
  • State Security
  • Trade and Industry
  • Economic Development
  • Defence and Military Veterans
  • Mineral Resources and
  • Environmental Affairs.

Last month, in Vienna on the margins of the 58th session of the International Atomic Energy Agency General Conference, the Russian Federation and South Africa signed an Intergovernmental Agreement on Strategic Partnership and Cooperation in Nuclear Energy and Industry.

The Department of Energy has explained the nature of this cooperation agreement, which creates the foundation for the strategic partnership and cooperation in the fields of nuclear power and industry for peaceful uses between the Republic of South Africa and Russia Federation.

The Department said that agreements will be concluded with other countries as well.

“All is on course and there is nothing untoward with regards to the country’s nuclear energy programme,” said the Presidency. – SAnews.gov.za

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