Cele denies having received an intelligence report from the State Security Agency before the unrest
20 July 2021
In response to a question (posed by Dr Groenewald), the Minister of Police, Bheki Cele, today vehemently denied that he had received any kind of information report from the Minister of State Security (SSA), Ayanda Dlodlo, before last week's unrest.
According to Minister Cele, he did not sign for, as procedure requires, nor receive any information. He added that the national Police Commissioner, Gen Kehla Sitole, also did not receive any information.
This strongly contradicts the claims that Minister Dlodlo made last week when she said that she had compiled a comprehensive information package on the situation and had submitted it to the police.
This serves as clear proof that there is either a serious lack of cooperation between the police and the SSA or one of the versions of events – either Dlodlo's or Cele's – is not true.
This is alarming and I will request President Cyril Ramaphosa to find out what the truth is. If such sensitive intelligence information is not handled correctly, it could have disastrous consequences for the country – as is evident in the events that transpired in KwaZulu-Natal over the past week.
Minister Cele's allegation is very serious and if it proves to be true, Minister Dlodlo will have to be stripped of her office immediately. This is not an ordinary situation and it can, therefore, not be viewed as a simple mistake. It drove South Africa to the verge of anarchy.
Minister Cele informed the Committee that the police force had procured equipment of more than a hundred million rand about a year ago to enable it to obtain crime intelligence.
This equipment is still not being used seeing as various government departments are required to give permission for the use thereof and the process keeps being delayed due to time-consuming red tape.
The Portfolio Committee will also look into this matter to determine why it is taking so long.
Today's visit and observations confirmed my previous claims that the respective intelligence institutions have let the country down and that the government was caught off guard, just as President Ramaphosa admitted last Friday.
The SSA must be held accountable and action must be taken against those who, for whatever reason, contributed to the Agency's failure.
Issued by Pieter Groenewald, FF Plus leader, 20 July 2021