Cwele: Budget vote: State Security: 2012


Budget Vote speevh by the Minister of State Security, Dr Siyabonga Cwele, MP; 10 May 2012


Ministers and Deputy Ministers present

Honourable Members

Distinguished Guests

Members of the Intelligence Community

Intelligence Veterans

Fellow South Africans


In this year of the Centenary of the ANC let me borrow from the words of one of our great leaders ” There is today among all races and men a general desire for progress and for cooperation because cooperation will facilitate that progress…..It is natural, therefore, that there should arise even among us this striving, this self-conscious movement and sighing for union…We are the last among all the nations of the earth  to discover the priceless jewel of cooperation ,…..cooperation is the key and watchword which opens the door, the everlasting door which leads to progress and national success. … The South African Native Congress is the voice wilderness bidding all the dark races of the subcontinent to come together once or twice a year in order to review the past and reject therein all those things which have retarded progress, the things which poison the spring of our national life and virtue; to label and distinguish the sins of civilisation and as members of our household to talk and think loudly on our home problems and the solutions of these.”

These were the words of Prixley Seme on 24 October 1911 as they were preparing the launch of the ANC.

Today’s review of the budget of the State Security Agency occurs once again when there are no discernible major threats to our constitutional democracy. However we have to sharpen our vision on some of the challenges and threats we confront, removing obstacles to progress to our National Democratic Revolution, engage in a national dialogue to provide workable solutions to these threats and challenges we face as a young nation.

Some of the threats we face derive from factors such as the global economic downturn, violent protest actions, and illegal migration. Others may arise from lack of protective security implementation in government, cyber crime, espionage and subversion, corruption and illicit economy. We may not close our eyes to the threats of food, water and energy security.

On 10 April 2012, His Excellency, President JG Zuma, in his address to the Intelligence Services Day, reminded us that  “intelligence and security services are key and important components of a state. Intelligence service work involves secret work which may at face value, appear to outsiders to be unrelated to government objectives. We still need to raise awareness that intelligence work is actually intended to advance government work and programmes. It is not just smoke and mirrors, spies and cameras as it is made out to be.”


We, in the State Security Department, are seized with the work of supporting government to achieve the outcomes to ensure that;

All people in South Africa are and feel safe and

We create a better South Africa and contribute to a better and safer Africa and the world

For this reason, the Department of State Security will continue to ply its trade guided by the theme: “Working Together to Build a Safer Nation in a Secure World.” This theme marks continuity with change. Continuity because we allow centres of excellence to soar to greater heights, working centres to strive for being centres of excellence and those areas that are not rising to the challenge are changed with a view to infusing a new focus, priorities and if needs be, new leadership to drive them.

Progress in the restructuring process


The processes that we had embarked upon in reviewing and restructuring the intelligence architecture are meant to ensure that we have professional and efficient state security architecture. Commendable progress has been made, since last year, with regard to the restructuring, consolidation and establishment of a professional State Security Agency (SSA).

In our previous address, we committed ourselves that we will finalise the integration of all our operating systems. We are happy to report that the benefits of an integrated State Security Agency (SSA) are already visible due to the savings that are accruing from having as Single Asset Register; Payroll, Budget Management, Financial Accounting and Procurement Systems.

We have entered the last phase of the restructuring process and have commenced with the official migration of our members into the new structure. We have also appointed a Programme Manager at a DDG level, to ensure that this crucial project is finalised within our timeframes. As part of stabilising the organisation, the migration of members is expected to be concluded by June 2012. This will be followed by the process of filling vacancies through internal transfers and external recruitment.

Pursuant to the commitment we made last year of codifying the Presidential Proclamation of 2009 that created the State Security Agency, we have prepared and tabled in parliament, the General Intelligence Laws Amendment Bill (GILAB). This legislation is currently before the Ad-Hoc Committee of the National Assembly and we hope it will be soon finalised into law governing the State Security Agency.

In the current financial year, we will focus on reviewing the remuneration management system in order to complement the changes in the organisational structures and align with changes in employee taxation legislation and address the changing employee needs. This will further aid in the recruitment, motivation and retention of high calibre members whilst also improving organisational effectiveness and the sustainable use of financial resources.

Training remains the driving pillar of our restructuring programme whose mainstay is to re-skill, refocus, empower and energise our members. Particular attention will be placed on tradecraft as well as language training. We will establish a Centre for Foreign Intelligence Service Training while on the other hand our members will continue to receive specialised training from our strategic partners abroad. Our flagship Cadet Program is being reviewed in order to attract loyal, dedicated and disciplined members to the Agency. This year we have begun with the recruitment of 150 young South Africans to our college as part of a three year plan to inject 540 new recruits in our community.


Part of our objective as State Security is to be able to conduct vetting for all government departments in a user-friendly and speedier manner. This is in line with our counter intelligence mandate that ensures that we create conditions of security that enables government and critical state entities to do their work. In this respect, we have prioritised the appointment of managers in the critical areas of Vetting and ICT Security. Last year we committed ourselves to reducing backlogs over a period of three (3) years.

As part of extending our vetting field beyond national departments, consultations were undertaken by SSA with provincial offices and national departments regarding the establishment of Vetting Field Units (VFUs) in departments that were not included in the 2006-2011 National Vetting Strategy.

To date 19 VFUs were established at a number of Organs of State. These include, but not limited to the South African Reserve Bank, South African Revenue Service (SARS), Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO), Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Department of Tourism, Department of Environmental Affairs National Prosecution Authority, Department of Correctional Services and State Information Technology Agency (SITA).

In this financial year we will build on this progress and prioritise the finalisation of the Integrated SSA National Vetting Strategy. The Strategy is intended to improve turn-around time in the vetting processes. The risk and project-based approaches that we intend to build into the strategy will go a long way in assisting with unnecessary backlogs. Importantly, we seek to automate the vetting process to make it more user-friendly and to cut down on turn-around times. This automation will begin the introduction of a continuous rather than a periodic approach to vetting.

As part of our vetting mandate we have also prioritised the training of Security Managers across government departments. In the reporting period, twenty two (22) Security Managers were trained and we expect to train an additional thirty (30) in 2012/2013 financial year.

When delivering his State of the Nation, the President called for the screening of all supply chain personnel in government, this as one of the interventions aimed at curbing corruption. This is critical given government’s bold and visionary Infrastructure Development Programme. In this regard, we have prioritised this project and remain ready and capable to implement it.

National communications

We continue with the project of integrating of our intelligence technology platforms in order to improve service delivery and to reduce the turnaround time. The storage capacity for the lawful intercepts was upgraded which has resulted in a faster and more efficient monitoring system. This has resulted in an improvement of our delivery of lawful intercepts to law enforcement agencies. The product distribution network together with the Internet

Protocol Interception Systems will be prioritised in this financial year. We wish to express our appreciation to Judge Khumalo, our former designated interception judge, who has gone on retirement and wish him well. We thank him for his contribution in ensuring that we do our work in terms of the law. We also welcome our new designated judge, Judge Yvonne Mokgoro. We look forward to working with you and in finalising outstanding matters such as electronic direction system as well as distribution network.


We are pleased to report that National Cyber security Policy Framework was approved by Cabinet in February 2012. This policy will result in improved coordination of government’s response to the 21st century challenges of information security. The State Security Agency is coordinating this work across government in order to finalise the policy by 2013.

National Security Strategy


We had reported last year that we were in an advanced stage of developing the National Security Strategy and the National Interest Doctrine. The National Intelligence Coordinating Committee (NICOC) Task Team has developed a Draft National Security Strategy, following consultations with critical role players in and outside the security structures to enrich the concept. The Draft Strategy is to be further refined with the involvement of stakeholders including parliament before it is finalised into a composite strategy document.


This House would recall that, as part of the National Security Strategy, we had identified Dual Use Technologies that have both security and commercial applications as a priority. An interdepartmental team has been established and is tasked to determine the status of dual use technologies and to propose plans for control and research and development. The Team has had consultations with senior officials at relevant public entities and proposed the establishment of an oversight, control, coordination and management mechanism of all innovation, research and development activities associated with dual use technologies. We will prioritise the finalisation of this Strategy in the current financial year.

Border Management Agency


As part of the SADC region, our country continues being confronted by the problems of illegal migration and other transnational organised crime, including human smuggling. We continue to work within the SADC framework together with our neighbours to collectively address this global challenge in our region.

The business case for the establishment of the BMA by 2014 will be processed by the Cabinet Committee in this current financial year.

Fraud and corruption

Honourable Members,

The single biggest threat to our development agenda is fraud and corruption. This is a cancer that steals from the most vulnerable in our society, undermines good governance and public confidence in the state. We are continuing with our efforts of ensuring that the security cluster is itself free of elements of corruption.

We appreciate the outstanding work done by the Inspector General, through investigations into the allegations of malpractice and corruption within the security agencies and we will not hesitate to act on her recommendations. We continue to participate in the Anti Corruption Task Team which coordinates effective investigation and prosecution of significant crimes including corruption.

Securing special events

Our flagship project of securing special events continues to contribute positively to our overall counter intelligence mandate. During the period under review, we focused on successfully supporting and securing major events, which involved international participants, dignitaries and heads of state. The list includes the 123rd International Olympic Committee Meeting, United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Centenary Celebrations of the ruling party, the African National Congress which was attended by dignitaries from the country and abroad.

Internal consultation


We recognise the attendant challenges of establishing a new organisation. In this respect, we committed ourselves to the creation of a conducive working environment for all our members through establishing internal consultation mechanisms. The Consultation Mechanism Task Team that was appointed in 2008 is finalising a report for the Minister on how to strengthen consultation mechanism. 


Our efforts to ensure closer cooperation between Veterans and the State Security Agency are ongoing. We have completed the draft Constitution for a State Security Veterans Association which will enable the sharing of intelligence knowledge, experiences and expertise with current members. In addition it is envisaged that the Association will promote the history of heritage of the State Security Agency. We have directed the Agency to continue with consolations with our Veterans in order to establish the Association by the end of this financial year.

Contributing to better and safer Africa in a better world


The gradual transformation of the world from a bi-polar arrangement into a global village, coupled with the inherent competition for world resources and desire by nation states to claim their share of the world markets, highlights some of the challenges in today’s complex world affairs.

President Zuma also reminded us “The radical transformation occurring globally has narrowed the distinction between foreign and domestic threats. World borders are now softer than ever. Whether it is transnational crime, terrorism or the global political situation, the international security situation requires all states to remain vigilant and to cooperate in protecting respective national security interests and their citizens.”

Honourable Members,

SADC remains stable except for the political and security challenge in Madagascar.  The implementation of the SADC roadmap is held hostage by the regime’s failure to enact amnesty legislation and unconditional safe return of all political exiles, especially Ravalomanana, to the Island.

The collapse of Gaddafi government has led to insecurity, increased terrorism and proliferation of arms in the Sahel region. This has resulted in an armed insurgence from northern part of Mali and the subsequent coup d’état that deposed President Amadou Toure on 21 March 2012. The divisions in the ranks of the army has not been able to stop the insurgence but resulted in attempted counter coups last week. ECOWAS is trying to intervene but the message from the African Union and the international community is to stop the insurgency and division of the territory, and return to democracy and elections.

The people of Guinea Bissau continue to face tragedy after tragedy. January was marked by the demise of former President Sanah. This necessitated the Speaker of the National Assembly, Mr Pereira, to act as interim President and to prepare for National Elections, which were held in March 2012. The ruling party, under the leadership of Carlos Gomez Junior obtained 49% in the first round and were poised to win the second round in April, yet on 12 April the army, once again staged a coup d’état.

The fundamental problem in Guinea is the lack of retirement arrangements for the army. This has resulted in a top-heavy army structure which strives in political interference and drug trade. The AU will not tolerate the military junta and has called for immediate reinstatement of the elected government and electoral processes. We further call upon the deployment of an international force to assist ECOWAS in the security sector reform and protection of democratic processes. We urge the international community to mobilise resources for these reforms including solidarity to the masses of people of Guinea Bissau as global citizens.

We remain concerned with the tension and recent hostilities between Sudan and South Sudan. We call on both parties to cease all hostilities and return to negotiations under the auspices of the AU High Level Panel lead by former President Thabo Mbeki. War is not a solution but dialogue is the answer. As South Africa, we will continue to encourage both parties in finding solutions particularly in relation to revenue sharing mechanisms and border demarcation. 

Despite these hot spots in Africa including political challenges in Somalia; and in the words of Seme “The brighter day is arising upon Africa. Already I seem to see her chains dissolved….conflicts and strife are rapidly disappearing before the fusing force of this enlightened perception of the true intertribal relation, which relation should subsist among a people with a common destiny”. As Africans we must deal decisively with Afro-pessimism and dismiss the negative utterances of our detractors.

The role of the African AU Commission is central to the rising of our continent. We must always ensure that our decisions are taken democratically to reflect the views of all state as equals, including, ensuring that all our member states are represented in the leadership and staff of the African Union. For 49 years the Southern African Region of the AU has never been given the opportunity to lead the organisation. This is contrary to the practice and spirit of regional rotation and the equality among the five regions of our continental body. In this respect the SADC is once again putting forward the candidature of Minister Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma to be the next Chair of the AU Commission.


In June we will be attending the Third International Meeting of High Representatives Supervising Security Issues which will take place in St Petersburg in Russia. This meeting will focus in the international information security, including finalizing a concept of the Convention on international information security, consider issues of internal energy security as well as problems of fighting piracy. On the sidelines of this conference and unofficial consultations of the heads of Security Council of the BRICS member state will be held in preparation for the next Summit in South Africa 2013. 


In striving for the highest attainable governance standards, we will continue to work closely with the Office of the Inspector General of Intelligence.  We will also continue to work with the Auditor General in ensuring that public funds are managed according to the applicable legislation. We will account to Parliament through the JSCI.

Allow me, Mr Chairperson, to thank,

My family and friends for their constant support, particularly from Lindo and Ntando.

Judge  Mokgoro who is responsible for interception directions, 

Auditor-General, Mr  Terence Nombembe,

Inspector-General, Adv Faith Radebe,

Members of the JSCI, under the leadership of Advocate Cecil Burgess.

Veterans of the Civilian Intelligence Services

Chairperson of the Staff Council, Mr Xolile Mashukuca

The Acting Director-General of State Security Agency, Mr Dennis Dlomo and his Senior Management Team

My advisory team and

My office staff

I request the House to adopt the Vote for State Security Agency.

I thank you

Issued by the Department of State Security, May 10 2012