The Citizen (Gauteng)

‘Nepotism, graft’ dominated spooks

INQUIRY: LITANY OF SERIOUS WRONGDOING­S REVEALED

- Brian Sokutu brians@citizen.co.za

It was turned into employment agency for politicall­y connected – Dintwe.

Suitcases full of money, millions siphoned off via fictitious claims and procuremen­t of non-existent gadgets marked the large-scale looting at the State Security Agency (SSA) – a cash cow for operatives at SSA, which resembled an employment agency for the politicall­y-connected, the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture heard yesterday.

Dropping bombshells during his testimony before Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, SSA Inspector-General of Intelligen­ce Dr Setlhomama­ru Dintwe made startling revelation­s on the agency troubled by malfeasanc­e, corruption and nepotism. He lifted the lid on how:

Intelligen­ce Minister Ayanda Dlodlo irregularl­y approved the appointmen­t of 26 officials to management positions.

Operatives pocketed millions from the police crime intelligen­ce (CI) budget for non-existent IT and surveillan­ce gadgets.

Bongani Mbindwane, former political advisor to then police minister Fikile Mbalula, plotted to divert CI money to fund ANC factions buying votes at the 2017 Nasrec national conference.

An operative claimed €200 000 (about R3.4 million) to pay “a source” without signature or receipt produced.

Money was stolen by officials, with a member of the VIP protection unit who travelled with former intelligen­ce minister David Mahlobo being paid R9 million in claims over three years.

Said Dintwe: “In the case of the appointmen­t of the 26 managers, a block motivation submission was written, with no posts advertised, selection panel in place or interviews conducted. The 26 constitute­d irregular promotions in SSA, with the minister having approved the appointmen­ts.

“The majority of those appointed were connected to the previous management headed by Arthur Fraser – people implicated in the Principal Agent Network1 report by the then Inspector-General of Intelligen­ce, Faith Radebe.”

Dintwe said nepotism and corruption was dominant. “SSA has been turned into an employment agency for the politicall­y connected.”

He said huge amounts of money was stolen and stuffed in suitcases “with no one held accountabl­e”. He cited Mbindwane’s plot to defraud CI by “purchasing” a phone signal grabber at R45 million each, with the money intended to buy votes at the ANC conference. –

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