Eskom protesters in court

2012-10-24 12:00
Protestors are to appear in court.

Protestors are to appear in court. (Shutterstock)

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Johannesburg – The court case against 14 environmental protesters who were arrested at Eskom will start around 12:00 on Wednesday at the Randburg Magistrate's Court.

The protesters, aged between 24 and 48, were released on bail of R500 each on Tuesday night.

No one was protesting at the courthouse ahead of the case.

Greenpeace climate and energy campaigner Melita Steele said this was because their focus was on the court case.

"We are here today to appear in court on ridiculous charges. That's our primary focus."

She said the reason for Tuesday's protest was because Greenpeace believed Eskom had failed the people of South Africa.

"They failed to produce clean, affordable and accessible electricity and continue to put South Africa's resources at risk."

The 14 were arrested for trespassing, intimidation and malicious damage to property on Tuesday during a protest at Eskom's Megawatt building in Johannesburg.

Twelve of them were from Greenpeace, one was from groundWork, and another was from Earthlife Africa. The organisations all campaign for environmental protection, clean air, and renewable energy.

The group climbed the building's roof to unfurl a banner across the front entrance reading: "Eskom is under new management".

Several other protesters chained themselves to a table outside the building, to protest against Eskom's continued reliance on coal and the parastatal's latest application to raise electricity tariffs.

On Monday, Eskom submitted an application to the National Energy Regulator of SA for a 16% tariff hike every year for the next five years.

Police cut the protesters' chains, handcuffed them, and took them to the Sandton police station.

- SAPA

Read more on:    greenpeace  |  eskom  |  renewable energy  |  environment
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