Robert McBride to head foreign branch of State Security Agency

Robert McBride.
Robert McBride.
Felix Dlangamandla

  • President Cyril Ramaphosa has appointed Robert McBride as director for the Foreign Branch of the State Security Agency.
  • McBride headed the Independent Police Investigative Directorate until last year. 
  • State Security Minister Ayanda Dlodlo said the appointment brings stability to the organisation.

President Cyril Ramaphosa has appointed Robert McBride to head the intelligence unit dealing with foreign intelligence.

In a statement on Thursday, it was announced that he had been appointed as head of the foreign branch for a period of three years, commencing from 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2023.

McBride headed the police watchdog Independent Police Investigative Directorate until his contract was not renewed last year. He then went to head up an ethics unit in the Department of Public Service and Administration.

State Security Minister Ayanda Dlodlo said McBride's appointment would serve to bring organisational stability to the agency.

"The work to implement the recommendations of the High Level Panel on the State Security Agency is proceeding steadily and this appointment is one of the critical steps towards the journey to rebuild the agency," she said.

McBride takes over from Joyce Mashele who was acting in that position. 

The SSA has been riddled with problems over the past decade, with the minister admitting last year that there were far too many vacancies in the organisation. 

The state security department said McBride brought a wealth of experience to the security services.

"Minister Dlodlo welcomes Mr McBride to his new position and wishes him well for his tenure in the agency. She also expresses her sincere thanks to the President for filling this position, which has been vacant for about four years." 

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