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Call for proposals in nuclear project

South Africa will put out requests for proposals on a nuclear procurement process on September 30, Energy Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson told parliament on Wednesday.

The request for proposals is the first official step towards the much vaunted nuclear power deal for South Africa because it will state SA’s nuclear needs.

The expectation is that the request for proposals will, for the first time, give a sense of what technology the government would prefer. From such requirements, the first true cost analysis could flow, the government having been coy about costs.

DA MP Gordon Mackay said Joemat-Pettersson’s announcement was astonishingly reckless.

“Not only is the proposed nuclear deal the subject of litigation in the Western Cape High Court, but the announcement will add yet further fuel to the fire that will see South Africa’s international credit rating go up in smoke,” Mackay said.

“That this announcement is being made prior to Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan’s medium-term budget policy statement is yet another sign of the factional war between President Jacob Zuma and Minister Gordhan – and is nothing more than a blatant attempt to bully Treasury into to coughing up the trillions of rands required to fund this unaffordable pet project of the president,” Mackay added.

He said the decision to commence with the first phase of the nuclear new build programme without one document with regard to the deal having been presented to parliament is blatant abuse of power.