Media release

Government dismisses misleading perception created

26 August 2014

26 August 2014

Government has noted with concern a mischievous report published in the Sunday Times that insinuated the State Security Agency has become an employment agency for the children of Ministers and other high-profile officials due to political nepotism.  Government views this report as speculative, subjective, and creates an impression that children of ministers and other officials should be exempt from pursuing a career in the public service.

Acting GCIS CEO, Phumla Williams, said “It is unfair to suggest that the appointments of these children was based on their relations and others, like them, also often fall prey to unfair discrimination by virtue of their relationships with political principals. It was quite misleading for the newspaper to report on few children, compared to the size of the enrolment at the academy.  All citizens have the constitutional right to apply for any employment, as long as they meet the requirements - even if it is within the public service.”

The Constitution states that all South Africans are equally entitled to the rights, privileges and benefits of citizenship, and this includes employment irrespective of race, age or gender. It also requires that the public administration is broadly representative of the South African people, with employment and personnel management practices based on ability, objectivity and fairness.

The intelligence academy has a stringent and rigorous recruitment and screening processes that are in place in order to fulfill its mandate of producing quality intelligence training to the members of the intelligence community.   It has a challenging role of producing intelligence officers who not only understand South Africa's national security paradigm, but can also carry out their duties within the values and ethical principles. The academy forms part of the department’s drive towards two outcomes of government - which include ensuring that all people in South Africa are and feel safe; as well as creating better South Africa and contribute to a better and safer Africa in a better world. 

“As indicated in the department’s budget vote on 23 July, the department has prioritised making intelligence a career of choice for many young South Africans, enhance the output of the academy, and strengthen synergies with other institutions with common interests. This report actually misleads the public and creates an impression that most of the students attending the academy are the children of politicians. In fact, this faceless report is far from the truth,” said Williams.

Phumla Williams
Cell: 083 501 0139

Issued by: Government Communication and Information System (GCIS)

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