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14 Apr 2015 16:23
Right2know posters. (David Harrison, M&G)
AmaBhungane, the Right2Know Campaign, the
Institute for Security Studies and the Council for the Advancement of the South
African Constitution have sent letters here and here to
parliament’s joint standing committee on intelligence (JSCI), Speaker Baleka
Mbete and all political parties calling for the selection of a new
Inspector-General of Intelligence to be restarted – and to be held in the open.
The JSCI recently completed its
interviews for a replacement in secret, despite the selection of the outgoing
Inspector-General, advocate Faith Radebe, having been conducted in public in
AmaBhungane, Right2Know and the Institute
for Security Studies have engaged with the JSCI over recent months in an
attempt to convince it to drop the cloak of secrecy at least for this
appointment, for which public trust is vital. The requests have been to no
On March 30, National Council of
Provinces Speaker Thandi Modise confirmed in a letter to Right2Know that the
JSCI had completed the interviews and would report to the National Assembly on
the outcome of the process.
This new call from the media and civil
society comes at a crucial time. The Constitution requires the JSCI’s
preferred candidate to be endorsed by a two-thirds majority of the National
This may be hard to attain if parties
believe that the process was flawed because of its secrecy.
A recent Daily Dispatch report suggested that the
JSCI accepted none of the eight short-listed candidates, and that the committee
intends restarting the process.
If there is a repeat selection process,
it is hoped that calls for transparency will be heeded.
The JSCI has not commented on the report.
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The M&G Centre for Investigative Journalism (amaBhungane) produced this story. www.amabhungane.co.za for our stories, activities and funding sources.
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