Low staff morale, leadership instability among issues in review panel’s report on the SSA

2019-02-15 21:53
President Cyril Ramaphosa [Photo: GCIS]

President Cyril Ramaphosa [Photo: GCIS]

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Low staff morale, unprofessional and unethical conduct and leadership instability are some of the issues highlighted in a report compiled by a high-level review panel to assess the mandate, capacity and organisational integrity of the State Security Agency (SSA).

The report also mentioned difficulties associated with the amalgamation of domestic and foreign intelligence gathering services.

President Cyril Ramaphosa appointed the panel after the state security ministry briefed him on challenges affecting the agency.

According to Presidency spokesperson Khusela Diko, the panel, led by former Cabinet minister Sydney Mufamadi, completed its report.

It will be made public in due course, the Presidency said in a statement which was released after President Ramaphosa's visit to the SSA's offices in Pretoria earlier on Friday.

According to the statement, the report identifies issues such as low staff morale, unprofessional and unethical conduct, leadership instability, corporate governance weaknesses, including procurement violations, and difficulties associated with the amalgamation of domestic and foreign intelligence gathering services several years ago.

"Addressing SSA staff members, President Ramaphosa said the report would be published in due course for the benefit of all South Africans, including members of the national intelligence service. 

"The report would also be the subject of engagement with the parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and the Inspector-General of Intelligence," Diko added.

Ramaphosa visited the ministry with Minister in the Presidency or Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, and Presidency director general, Dr Cassius Lubisi.

Ramaphosa told SSA staff that the agency's recent past was unfortunate and there would be accountability for the wrongs that had occurred within intelligence services.

He called on staff to recommit themselves to serving the people of South Africa and adhering to the rule of law in support of the country's trajectory of renewal and growth.

READ: Goodbye SSA? Ramaphosa to re-establish National Security Council

Ramaphosa also cautioned them to desist from involving themselves in party political dynamics, saying: "We want you to do things correctly, in terms of the law and corporate governance, without a deviant agenda."

He said the SSA should become a professional civilian intelligence service that the country could be proud of, knowing that South Africa was "fully secured".

Ramaphosa urged the SSA to develop the human capacity and innovation to support South Africa's national objectives.

He said the report spelt out a way forward towards the rebuilding of an SSA that would be revamped, renewed and recommitted.

Read more on:    ssa  |  cyril ramaphosa  |  pretoria
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