Arthur Fraser vs Inspector General of Intelligence in court over security clearance
Inspector General of Intelligence (IGI) Setlhomamaru Dintwe heads to the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on Thursday to ask it to bar State Security Agency (SSA) director general Arthur Fraser from interfering with his duties.
Dintwe launched an urgent court application last week claiming Fraser had allegedly sought to revoke his security clearance and had interfered with his functions while he was investigating a complaint lodged against the SSA director general.
In a statement, released last Wednesday, Dintwe said he would ask the court to put measures in place to “ensure my personal security”, following Fraser’s “brazen and unlawful actions”.
Dintwe said he was seeking urgent interim relief preventing Fraser from acting “unconstitutionally, unlawfully and [being] motivated by bad faith”.
“I seek a range of declaratory and interdictory relief on a final basis relating to the powers of the director general,” he said in his affidavits, dated April 10.
He added that Fraser’s decisions had implications for the proper functioning of the office of the IGI, as Fraser had infringed upon its constitutional and statutorily protected independence by trying to revoke his security clearance.
Claims of fake signature, improperly awarded tenders
Dintwe has been investigating Fraser following a formal complaint lodged by the Democratic Alliance over the director general’s involvement in an alleged parallel intelligence network.
According Dintwe’s affidavit, Fraser has been accused of fraudulently copying the signature of then minister of intelligence services Ronnie Kasrils between 2007 and 2008 when establishing the illegal intelligence programme.
He is also said to have improperly awarded tenders and contracts to people associated with his family, and other individuals, through the parallel intelligence network.
Dintwe said Fraser had been aware that he was the subject of an investigation since May 2017.
City Press reported over the weekend that Fraser said he withdrew Dintwe’s security clearance because the IGI could not be trusted with state secrets.
He said he had evidence that Dintwe “personally and without authority disclosed classified information to representatives of political parties in Parliament”, specifically the DA.
Treason charges recommended
Fraser said he would only disclose his sources to a judge in camera.
He added that the investigation was a political conspiracy to discredit him and the African National Congress.
“The purported investigation is malicious and at the whims of political parties aimed at discrediting me, the agency and the current political leadership,” Fraser said in his replying affidavit.
Jacques Pauw, in his book The President’s Keepers , accused Fraser of running the parallel intelligence network during a previous stint at the spy agency before 2010.
According to the book, an internal SSA probe concluded that Fraser should be charged with treason for his role in the running of the project.
Fraser initiated and oversaw the parallel intelligence network project as then deputy director general of the National Intelligence Agency, between 2007 and 2009.
Pauw last week told News24 that Dintwe requested a letter from Pauw in early March to confirm that neither he nor his staff had given Pauw the state security documents. Pauw complied.
On Monday, DA chief whip John Steenhuisen released a statement saying that the party rejected Fraser’s allegations― contained in his affidavit― that it had received classified information from Dintwe. ― News24.