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Minister of Water and Environmental Affairs and others v Really Useful Investments (Pty) Ltd and others

3 October 2016

Supreme Court of Appeal

Citation: Minister of Water and Environmental Affairs v Really Useful Investments (436/2015) [2016] ZASCA 156 (3 October 2016)

Date: 3 October 2016

Judge: Navsa JA

The matter pertained to a damages claim by Really Useful Investments (Pty) Ltd (RUI) against the Minister of Environmental Affairs, the Western Cape MEC for Environmental Affairs and Development Planning and Local Government and the City of Cape Town for the alleged economic loss resulting from enforcement action taken by the those organs of state against RUI. The damages claim was brought in terms of section 37 of the Environmental Conservation Act, 1989. The organs of state involved raised an exception that RUI’s claim disclosed no cause of action. The exception was dismissed by the High Court, but it was upheld by the Supreme Court of Appeal.

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High Court of the Republic of South Africa, Western Cape Division, Cape Town 

Case No. 8102/2014

Date: 27 March 2015

Judge: Savage J

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Section 24 of 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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