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Law on way for split of SSA into foreign and domestic branches of intelligence

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Moves are already afoot for the separation of the State Security Agency into a domestic branch and a foreign branch in line with the recommendations of the High Level Review Panel report.

Minister in the Presidency Mondli Gungubele. Picture: Phando Jikelo/African News Agency (ANA)

MOVES are already afoot for the separation of the State Security Agency into a domestic branch and a foreign branch in line with the recommendations of the High Level Review Panel report.

The panel, which was chaired by former Cabinet Minister Sydney Mafumadi, had recommended that the SSA be split into two, as was the case in the past.

The National Intelligence Agency was merged with the South African Secret Service in 2009.

But the high level panel said this should be scrapped and the two branches, focusing on foreign and domestic intelligence, be re-established.

Minister in the Presidency Mondli Gungubele said this during the budget vote, where he said the law had already been finalised and would be sent to the lawmakers.

“With regard to the dis-establishment of the SSA, I am glad to announce that the General Intelligence Laws Amendment Bill has been finalised, and the roadmap for its submission to Parliament was presented to the Joint Standing Committee on Intelligence. It is expected that this Bill will be submitted to Parliament in September,” said Gungubele.

“The bill will enable the establishment of the domestic arm of the service to focus on counter-intelligence and domestic intelligence mandate, the establishment of a foreign service to focus on foreign intelligence gathering and the re-establishment of the South African National Academy of Intelligence, as schedule 3A government component to focus on intelligence training as a critical element of skills development and capacity building.”

Gungubele said they were also implementing the other recommendations of the review panel by Mafumadi.

A turnaround plan will be submitted later in the year on this.

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