Inspector General of Intelligence: interviews for filling of vacancy

Joint Standing on Intelligence

09 June 2015
Chairperson: Ms C September (ANC)
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Meeting Summary

The Joint Standing Committee on Intelligence met for the interviews of candidates for the Inspector General Vacancy. The following candidates were interviewed by the Committee:

Ms Jayashree Govender
Mr Mahlubandile Radebe
Mr Mathe Diseko
Mr Mampogoane Nchabeleng
Mr Imtiaz Fazel

Meeting report

Opening and Welcoming Remarks
The Chairperson opened the meeting by welcoming all present. The purpose of that meeting was to interview candidates for the Inspector General of Intelligence. The Chairperson explained the procedure of interviews to all the candidates that were shortlisted. She cautioned candidates that as a Committee they will not ask questions that will be of national security and candidates in their responses should divulge matters that were of national security. They will not deal with any matter that concerns national security activity.

The following questions were asked to the candidates:

Ms Jayashree Govender

Ms Govender was asked if she had applied for the position of Inspector General of Intelligence.

She was asked to describe herself.

 

She was asked whether there were any things that might be held against her in terms of her competency.

She was asked about the role of the Inspector General of Intelligence was and how it fitted into the South African constitutional democracy. She was asked to include and outline the competing human rights and state obligations in her response.

Ms Govender was asked why she had applied for the position and why she thought she was the best candidate for the position.

She was asked which acts or legislations governed or regulated the Intelligence services.

She was asked what value she added during her tenure in the Office of the Inspector General.

She was asked how she would ensure that the Prevention and Combating of Corruption Activities Act of 2004 was effectively implemented.

She was asked if there was anything wrong with the above Act.

She was asked what she meant when she said there was nothing when she arrived at the Office of the Inspector General. Did this suggest that there was something wrong in that office currently?

She was asked whether she had ever advised the Inspector General to take a certain action but the IG didn't take her advice, and how did she feel and what happened.

She was asked if she had ever managed a body of people in terms of her work experience and how she used her skills to lead in her respective capacity.

She was asked how she had advised the IG when encountered by issues of transfer pricing which led to crime intelligence.

The Chairperson interjected that Ms Govender may not answer that question if she never dealt with such issues.

She was asked if there were any questions she had for the Committee.

The Chairperson thanked Ms Govender for availing herself for the interview. The Committee will deliberate and recommend to the National Assembly (NA) and the NA will recommend to the President who will make the final appointment.

Refer to audio for responses. Ms Govender’s interview was conducted from 5:59 – 43:23

Mr Mampogoane Nchabeleng

Mr Nchabeleng was asked to confirm whether he had applied for the position of the Inspector General.

He was asked to describe himself.

He was asked what he understood about the Prevention and Combating of Corruption Activities Act of 2004, how he would ensure it was effectively implemented, and what improvements he could make to that act.

He was asked how he would build relationships between the Office of the Inspector General, the President and the Executive, Parliament and Committees, other international organisations and foreign governments.

He was asked how he would ensure there was no political intervention if appointed as Inspector General.

He was asked what was his management style was and what were the key factors that encouraged an effective and productive work place.

The Chairperson said that if there was something that was not disclosed in the interview process and later revealed by his references it would jeopardise his chances of success to be appointed as IG.

She thanked Mr Nchabeleng for availing himself for the interviews. The Committee will deliberate and recommend to the National Assembly and the NA will recommend to the President who will make the final appointment.

Refer to audio for responses. Mr Nchabeleng’s interview was conduced from 47:18 – 1:14:14

Mr Mahlubandile Radebe

Mr Radebe was asked if anything had changed with regard to his integrity.

He was asked if there was anything he wanted to share with the Committee that might embarrass him in so far as he was recommended in this position

The Chairperson explained that the interview was conducted in an open session and any matter that related to intelligence in terms of the Intelligence Act, the Oversight Act, or intelligence work would not be discussed or divulge in terms of the interview. Therefore, no questions or answers will be expected from him in that regard.

He was asked why he applied for the position and why he thought he was the best candidate for the position.

He was asked if the public in general knew about the Office of the Inspector General.

He was asked how he could differentiate the oversight roles and the functions of the Joint Standing Committee on Intelligence and the Office of the IG of Intelligence.

He was asked what his understanding was of the requirements of the Oversight Act.

He was asked how he would conduct himself if he had to act independently and impartially.

He was asked how he would ensure there was a balance between the Office of the IG in terms of the need to maintain secrecy and on the other hand to ensure transparency in a constitutional state.

He was asked how he will ensure there was no political influence in his duties as an IG.

He was asked if the public knew about the role of the Office of the IG.

He was asked about the vision that governed the Office of the IG, how he would deal with the challenges that encompassed that vision and how it related to the National Development Plan (NDP).

The Chairperson thanked Mr Radebe for availing himself for interview. There will be a full security clearance for all the candidates. The Committee will deliberate and recommend to the National Assembly and it will recommend to the President who will make the final appointment.

Refer to audio for responses. Mr Radebe’s interview was conducted from 1:20:54 – 1:58:55


Mr Mathe Diseko

Mr Diseko was asked if anything had changed with regard to his integrity.

The Chairperson explained that the interview was conducted in an open session and any matter that related to intelligence in terms of the Intelligence Act, the Oversight Act, or intelligence work would not be discussed or divulge in terms of the interview. Therefore, no questions or answers will be expected from him in that regard.

He was asked if he could confirm that he had applied for the position of IG.

He was asked if there was anything he wanted to share with the committee that might embarrass him and make him unsuitable for the position.

He was asked what his understanding of the role of IG of Intelligence was and how it fitted to the South African constitutional democracy including his understanding of the competing human rights and obligations.

He was asked which act regulated the intelligence services.

He was asked how he would manage complaints and grievances from his office if appointed as an IG.

He was asked why he thought he should be the one considered for the position of an IG.

He was asked to share the challenges that faced national intelligence compared to those of the world.

He was asked to give his view on the image of the Office of the IG and how should it be improved and why.

The Chairperson thanked Mr Diseko for availing himself for interview. There will be a full security clearance to all the candidates. The Committee will deliberate and recommend to the National Assembly and the NA wiilll recommend to the President who will make the final appointment.

Refer to audio for responses. Mr Diseko’s interview was conducted from 1:59:00 – 2:33:00

Mr Imtiaz Fazel

Mr Fazel was asked whether anything had changed with regards to his declaration.

The Chairperson explained that the interview was conducted in an open session and any matter that related to intelligence in terms of the Intelligence Act, the Oversight Act, or intelligence work would not be discussed or divulge in terms of the interview. Therefore, no questions or answers will be expected from him in that regard.

He was asked if he could confirm that he had applied for the position of IG.

He was asked what issues he would first tackle locally and internationally should he be appointed to the position of IG of Intelligence.
He was asked what managerial skills he had and how he would use them to lead the Office of the IG.

He was asked to give an example of how he successfully dealt with political interference from his seniors.

He was asked what value he was bringing to the Office of the Inspector General.

He was asked how the South Africa oversight mechanism was compared with other international models.

He was asked what skills he would bring to the Office of the Inspector General to make it effective and efficient.

The Chairperson told Mr Fazel that a full security clearance will be done on them. Any of his references that provided information about him that was not declared will jeopardise his appointment.

He was asked if there were any questions he wanted to pose to the Committee.

The Chairperson thanked Mr Fazel for availing himself for the interview. The Committee will deliberate and recommend to the National Assembly and the NA wiilll recommend to the President who will make the final appointment.

Refer to audio for responses. Mr Fazel’s interview was conducted from 2:33:52 – 2:48: 58

The meeting was adjourned.
 

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