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Anti-nuclear activist gives radiation health warning after trip to Japan

May 28 2017 17:00
Matthew le Cordeur

Cape Town – An anti-nuclear activist warned residents of Khayelitsha this week that the health effects of a radiation disaster was a real threat to their future, as the South African government gears up to restart its nuclear energy programme.

Horst Kleinschmidt, an activist who recently returned from Japan and South Korea, said the people had experienced the harmful effects of nuclear radiation and wanted to warn the world against using the energy form.

“(They have) been the victims of nuclear radiation in way or another effecting the health of those people,” said Kleinschmidt, who was also a prominent anti-apartheid activist.

He was taken to Japan’s Fukushima disaster zone, where a tsunami caused the nuclear power plant to have a radiation spill.

“They took to me anther nuclear power plant, where the company showed that it wasn’t informing the population that the plant was leaking (radiation),” he said. “They kept it secret in order to keep profits rolling.”

His presentation to scholars, union leaders and other environmentalists was organised by the Southern African Faith Communities’ Environment Institute (Safcei), which recently won a court case that cancelled government’s 9.6 GW nuclear new build procurement programme.

The event was held a week after nuclear energy executives and experts regrouped in Cape Town at the African Utility Week to discuss the need for nuclear energy to enhance South Africa and Africa’s economic growth.

WATCH: Horst Kleinschmidt's message to SA

safcei  |  nuclear energy
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