Analysis

Demystifying Intelligence: Toward A Community-Driven National Security 

The gathering, correlating, evaluating, and analysing of domestic intelligence is one of the most important duties that are related to the mandate of the national intelligence body, which is known as the State Security Agency (SSA). The purpose of this function is to determine whether or not there is an actual or possible threat to the safety of the nation and its citizens.

Intelligence that has been gathered in reference to any such threat is, or should, then be provided to relevant bodies in order for those entities to fulfill their respective mandates for national security.

For instance, information pertaining to criminal activity should be provided to the South African Police Service (SAPS) for the purposes of investigating any offence or alleged offence. When it comes to matters concerning the accomplishment of any immigration function, the Department of Home Affairs (DHA) is or should be informed.

These functions are not intended to be kept a secret as they are available to the public so that individuals are aware of the operations carried out by the SSA and other entities with respect to matters of national security. For more information, consult the National Strategic Intelligence Act.

The truth remains that certain activities that are carried out as a part of these functions cannot be made public for a variety of reasons; however, this does not imply that these functions are carried out with the intention of putting any individual within the Republic at a disadvantage. The real mandates that government entities have in terms of security are a matter of public knowledge, especially during peace times.

In the event of armed conflict (war) or the proclamation of a state of emergency, the rights of persons, including access to information, may be restricted. In addition, personnel of the SSA may be seconded to the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) or the South African Police Service (SAPS) for service or training in such circumstances. A member is subject to the discipline, and command and control applicable to the SANDF or the SAPS for the term of such secondment, while they are still subject to the Intelligence Services Act.

In light of the responsibilities that come with the office of the president and in accordance with the National Strategic Intelligence Act, the President is kept abreast of any known threat or possible threat to the safety of the Republic or the people living within it.

Together with our implementing partners, we facilitate violence prevention training in workplaces, institutions of learning, and other public places. This is done to encourage policy compliance, respect for the rule of law, and social cohesion. 

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