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Wings Park Port Elizabeth (Pty) Ltd v Member of the Executive Council for Environmental Affairs and Tourism, Eastern Cape Provincial Government and others

14 June 2018

High Court of the Republic of South Africa, Eastern Cape Division, Grahamstown 

Case No. 3917/17

Date: 14 June 2018

Judge: Plasket J

In this matter, the Court found that appeals under the National Environmental Management Act, 1998 are wide appeals. In the matter, the Eastern Cape provincial department responsible for environmental affairs dismissed an appeal against the decision of the Eastern Cape Provincial Department responsible for environmental affairs to grant environmental authorisation to the Wings Park Port Elizabeth (Pty) Ltd (Wings Park). Wings Park challenged the refusal by the Department to grant environmental authorisation to it on review, but chose not to challenge the decision of the MEC to dismiss its internal appeal. The Court held that, even if Wings Park was successful on appeal, the matter was moot because the appeal was a complete re-hearing of the application by the MEC.

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Section 24of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996

Everyone has the right to an environment that is not harmful to their health or well-being; and to have the environment protected, for the benefit of present and future generations, through reasonable legislative and other measures that prevent pollution and ecological degradation; promote conservation; and secure ecologically sustainable development and use of natural resources while promoting justifiable economic and social development.

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