OUTA concerned about dismissal of NNR board member Peter Becker
Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (OUTA) is disappointed with the way the Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy, Gwede Mantashe, removed the only civil society representative on the board of the National Nuclear Regulator (NNR). Peter Becker was appointed more than a year ago as the community safety representative on the NNR board, as required by the NNR Act, to represent the interests of civil society affected by nuclear activities.
Becker was suspended as an NNR board member a few weeks ago, shortly before an NNR board meeting that formally approved Eskom's safety case for the replacement of the steam generators at Eskom's Koeberg nuclear power station. The board meeting allowed Eskom to proceed with the steam generator replacement project. Becker was not only denied access to the board meeting, but also to NNR board minutes, the meeting’s agenda and other NNR information to which he had a right as a board member.
OUTA is unpacking the contents of the letter by the Minister to establish if the decision to dismiss Becker was rational and fair.
Considering the President’s stance in his recent SONA speech that government should do more to take hands with civil society, OUTA believes it is imperative that civil society is represented on government oversight boards such as the NNR. “As a country with many challenges, one would think that government would welcome the input of all critical thinkers in order to find real and lasting solutions for our country’s many problems,” Wayne Duvenage, OUTA’s CEO, said. “Civil society can no longer be ignored.”