Some NGOs are security agents of foreign forces - Mahlobo

Cape Town – There are South Africans and NGOs who are collaborating with foreign forces to destabilise the country, State Security Minister David Mahlobo said on Tuesday.

"Not everybody is our friend. The forces that are opposed to us are hard at work. Our NGOs play an important part in South Africa, but there are those who work to destabilise the state," he told MPs during his department’s budget vote speech.

He said they knew who they were and that the government would not be shy in dealing with them.

In South Africa, NGOs had played their part in the struggle and would continue to play it.

"But there are those who are used as NGOs, but they are not. They are just security agents that are being used for covert operations."

He said these NGOs had funding, had interception equipment that the State Security Agency used, and could not explain their funding. Some of these so-called NGOs had funny names, and complained that the SSA was targeting them.

He accused these NGOs of funding student protests.

The minister went on a rant against state and non-state actors who he said were hard at work in certain parts of the globe to promote their agenda and undermine the national security of various countries.

They were in the mass media, community-based organisations, foreign multinational corporations, and religious and student organisations, and included influential people and funders of opposition parties. All wanted to destabilise countries who did not share similar views to them.

He criticised the recent spate of student and other protests across the country.

"Some of these protesters are undermining the authority of the state by engaging in acts that seek to provoke the law enforcement agencies, hence some people have acted with impunity by killing members of the security agencies," he said.

He called for South Africans to refuse to be "part of this barbaric, backward thinking".

He questioned the motives behind some of these protests, especially those in which buildings were set alight.

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