SA's civilian intelligence structures to merge

Sunday, October 4, 2009
By: 
Nthambeleni Gabara

Pretoria - South Africa's various civilian intelligence structures are to merge into a single structure, to be known as the State Security Agency (SSA).

State Security Minister Siyabonga Cwele announced on Friday the creation of a single department would centralise command and control of the civilian intelligence structures.

The National Intelligence Agency (NIA) and South African Secret Service (SASS) and their Heads of Services will continue to operate in terms of their respective mandates, but in a more integrated manner under the direction of a single Director General.

"The intention is to create greater efficiency and effectiveness, enhance cooperation between the various intelligence structures as well as effect savings," said the minister.

He said the department was in the process of making the necessary legislative amendments that would disestablish the civilian intelligence structures so as to enable their incorporation as branches.

Structures to be incorporated in the new agency include domestic intelligence, foreign intelligence, national communications, intelligence academy and corporate services.

"The creation of a single component for corporate services will significantly reduce the strain on the intelligence budget and ensure the consistent implementation of all human resource management and other policies applicable to State Security," said Cwele.

He said that the changes would not lead to disruptions in operations as staff would not be affected by the reorganisation. Those staff members working in corporate affairs will be consulted on possible redeployment to core business and receive further training if necessary.

The minister also announced the appointment of Mo Shaik as head of the South African Secret Service, Liso Njenje as head of the National Intelligence Agency and Mzuvukile Jeff Maqetuka as director general of the State Security Agency.

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