Home Africa South Africa: Gwede Mantashe’s Performance Agreement Includes a Nuclear Vanity Project That We Cannot Afford

South Africa: Gwede Mantashe’s Performance Agreement Includes a Nuclear Vanity Project That We Cannot Afford

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South Africa: Gwede Mantashe's Performance Agreement Includes a Nuclear Vanity Project That We Cannot Afford

At last, the long-awaited Ministerial Performance Agreements have been published, but the one pertaining to the Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy means he will be measured on procuring nuclear power at a time and in an economic environment that our country can least afford.

The long-awaited Ministerial Performance Agreements for South African cabinet ministers were published last week – more than a year after Cyril Ramaphosa promised them in his first State of the Nation Address in 2019. Despite the delay, the finalisation of these agreements is to be welcomed, as it permits the ministers to be held accountable for their work, and (hopefully!) removed from office for poor performance or non-delivery.

In the agreement the President signed with Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy, Gwede Mantashe, however, the minister commits to procuring 2500MW of nuclear energy by 2024. Not only is this beyond the scope the cabinet agreed to in the Integrated Resource Plan 2019 (South Africa’s electricity roadmap), it is beyond the capability of South Africa to implement or manage in the short to medium term. The IRP notes in Decision 8 to “Commence preparations for a nuclear build programme to the extent of 2500 MW…

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