Mantashe must go for hindering rapid and just energy transition

Issued by Kevin Mileham MP – DA Shadow Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy
25 Jun 2023 in News

Please find attached a soundbite by Kevin Mileham MP.

The DA calls for the immediate dismissal of Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe due to his continuous defiance of the President and his failure to acknowledge his responsibility in energy planning and international cooperation. It has become abundantly clear that Mantashe’s actions and ideologies are hindering the much-needed rapid and just energy transition in our country.

Mantashe’s recent decision to snub the top-level meeting hosted by President Cyril Ramaphosa with European leaders to launch a European-funded green-energy initiative is deeply concerning. Instead of joining the President to sign a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Danish and Dutch prime ministers, he opted to attend a different event entirely. This kind of blatant disregard for the President’s efforts to foster international cooperation is unacceptable.

Moreover, Mantashe’s excuse for not signing the MOU, claiming that he does not sign agreements he has not seen, is both evasive and irresponsible. As a Minister, it is his duty to familiarize himself with relevant documents and actively engage in discussions related to important initiatives. By refusing to sign the agreement and failing to attend the event, he demonstrated a lack of commitment to the responsibilities entrusted to him.

Furthermore, it is disheartening to witness Mantashe’s open support for the coal lobby and his focus on restoring Eskom’s fleet of coal-fired power stations, disregarding the urgent need to transition to cleaner and more sustainable energy sources. His personal interests and ideological biases are hindering the progress of our energy sector and impeding the necessary steps toward a greener future.

In a time of crisis, when our nation faces numerous challenges related to energy security, climate change, and socio-economic development, we cannot afford a recalcitrant and ideologically compromised Minister at the helm of the energy portfolio. We need a leader who is proactive, committed, and willing to work collaboratively with international partners to address these pressing issues.

The DA firmly believes that Mantashe’s actions and stance are detrimental to the interests of our country and its citizens. We urge President Cyril Ramaphosa to take decisive action and remove Minister Gwede Mantashe from his position. Only with a capable and visionary leader in the energy sector can we overcome the hurdles obstructing our path toward a rapid and just energy transition that benefits all South Africans. Mantashe must go!