Presidency responds to UDM abandoning load shedding case

Thursday, September 14, 2023

President Cyril Ramaphosa’s spokesperson Vincent Magwenya has responded to the United Democratic Movement (UDM) and other applicants abandoning their load shedding court case. 

The UDM and its co-applicants, which included the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) and Build One South Africa, had taken government to court on an urgent basis, on an issue that required government to coordinate numerous department responses in relation to the “very complex matter” of load shedding.

“This legal challenge questions the lawfulness and constitutionality of the Just Energy Transition Investment Plan,” said Magwenya.

He was speaking on Thursday during a regular press briefing with media houses to update them on the President’s diary.

Magwenya said the process to coordinate government’s response required government to “spend a great deal of energy, time and money to respond in detail, as it always does on any matter before the courts”.

“This process has cost taxpayers money and to some extent taken attention away from the urgent related issues to which government has to attend operationally.”

He said the UDM, Building One SA, Numsa and others made government spend public funds and time on this gathering of information before suddenly withdrawing the application. 

Government, according to Magwenya, always approaches such matters with a view that it is not only responding to the applicants, but it is responding to the public, while attending to the underlying issues in the normal course of the administration. 

“Therefore, for all these applicants to take up time and taxpayers' money to then simply walk away because they finally appreciated the detailed substantive and indisputable response submitted by government is in fact an insult to both the court and the South African public. 

“In particular, the UDM is well represented in Parliament where government continuously accounts to elected representatives of the people in work in progress and challenges faced,” he said. –