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Corruption Watch: SA should be worried about SA-Russia nuclear deal

The NGO says South Africa should be worried because the idea of a nuclear deal has been met with much opposition.

FILE: Russian President Vladimir Putin welcomes President Jacob Zuma at the start of the G20 summit on 5 September 2013, Saint Petersburg, Russia. Picture: AFP

JOHANNESBURG - Corruption Watch has joined those who are alarmed at reports that President Jacob Zuma may be involved in a nuclear deal with Russia.

The NGO says South Africa should be worried because the idea of a nuclear deal has been met with much opposition.

The group says it’s unclear how the president would proceed with such a deal given a court judgement that halted the nuclear build programme earlier this year.

The Sunday Times reported that a message had been sent by President Vladimir Putin's team to Zuma to speed up and conclude a multibillion dollar nuclear deal with the country.

Corruption Watch says that Russia has a reputation of being involved in disrupting democratic processes in other countries.

Executive director David Lewis says: “What Russia has been involved in, in subverting democracies all over the world, you have to take them seriously.”

Lewis says there are questions over the appointment of David Mahlobo as Energy Minister.

“I mean the nuclear deal has been met with enormous opposition from South Africa.”

Reports suggest Zuma wants to conclude the nuclear deal before the governing party's elective conference in December.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)