Inspector General of Intelligence appointment: shortlisting of candidates by JSCI sub-committee

Joint Standing on Intelligence

01 November 2016
Chairperson: Mr C Nqakula (ANC)
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Meeting Summary

The Committee met to shortlist candidates to be interviwed for the vacant post of Inspector General of Intelligence. The Committee received 17 applications but only 12 met the minimum advertised requirements. There was a brief debate on whether the shortlist should have 10 or 12 names. The Committee eventually settled on 10 names and agreed to conduct the interviews next week over 2 days.

The full list of candidates & CV's:

  1. Clinton Paul Davids Prof.
  2. Sethlomamaru Isaac Dintwe Adv.
  3. Jayashree Govender Mr.
  4. Smanga Phillip Jele Mr.
  5. Andile Barnabas Kilifele Mr.
  6. Mampogoane Petrus Nchabaleng Mr.
  7. Victor Euclid Ngidi Mr.
  8. Brightboy Nhlakanipho Nkontwana Dr.
  9. Nyelisani Clarence Tshiterke Prof.
  10. Bruce William Watson​.

Meeting report

Opening Remarks

The Chairperson welcomed everyone. He checked if all Members of the subcommittee were present. While there were some absentees and there would be a late arrival, he noted that there was a quorum and the meeting would proceed.

The Chairperson reminded Members that the Committee had agreed even with respect to the shortlisting that the media would be allowed to be present.

Shortlisting of candidates to be interviewed

The Chairperson explained that the purpose of the meeting was to shortlist candidates to be interviewed for the vacant post of Inspector General of Intelligence. According to his office, 17 applications had been received. Their CVs and other documentation were in the files that had been circulated to Members.

The Chairperson remarked that Members were not new to this type of task and hoped they would conduct this to the best of their ability. He added that in a situation like this, there were no sides, “there were only two sides here, those two sides are the Chairperson and members of the subcommittee. There are no political sides here. We are a subcommittee that was appointed by the JSCI. The Chair’s role is clear – to guide the meeting”.

The Chairperson asked if there were suggestions on how to proceed. Should the subcommittee go through the file in sequence as this might be the easiest way to do this?

Mr J Skosana (ANC) thanked the Chairperson for giving him an opportunity to make an input. He commented that the Committee should go through all the applications as per the rules and check if the candidates met the requirements. The subcommittee could thereafter decide on a suitable number of candidates to interview.

The Chairperson recapped that the proposal was for the subcommittee to go through the applicants from 1 to 17. This can be done. The advert was here and would service the subcommittee as it does this work to check if the candidates actually qualify.

The Chairperson indicated that his office had produced a document to aid the subcommittee. He stressed that this document was not meant to influence Members but was merely a guideline. The document contained pages that were either shaded pink or green. The green represented people who the office felt qualified while the pink represented the opposite. That was not a decision of the subcommittee but just a view of the office. Members could exercise their own view. It was not a firm decision. That document went “hand in glove” with the Act and the applications from the various candidates.

The Chairperson asked to hear from Members.

A Member requested that the Chairperson give Members 15-20 minutes to individually go through the CVs and compare them with the other information. The subcommittee could thereafter go through the list and make the shortlisting.

The Chairperson asked if other Members agreed with this suggestion.

Everyone agreed.

The Chairperson afforded Members 20 minutes to go through the documents.

After allowing everyone to read the documents, the Chairperson highlighted that there was something else that was part of the decision taken by the JSCI. It was agreed that the shortlisting would encompass the following 2 points – the shortlist will not be less than 5 people and the Committee would extend the number of names that would be shortlisted to about 10. That was a decision taken. The subcommittee was bound by the decision of the JSCI. Nevertheless, the subcommittee did have some kind autonomy and could go back if it effected changes to motivate to the JSCI why it had veered away from its decision.

The Chairperson emphasised that the subcommittee could not shortlist less than 5 people but could do between 5 and 10. He asked if Members had any comments about this.

Mr Skosana commented that it was the JSCI resolution that more than 5 candidates should be interviewed according to the requirements in the advert. He further commented that out of the 17 applications, it seemed that only 12 candidates qualified for the position. He suggested that the Committee should consider all 12 candidates. The Committee could always motivate at a later stage why it went beyond the maximum number of ten.

The Chairperson asked if there were any supporters or counters to this proposal.

Mr P Parkies (ANC) concurred with the suggestion and stated that he did not imagine that it would be a problem. He further sought clarity on whether there were 17 applications or if some had not come before the subcommittee.

The Chairperson indicated that the Committee would deal with this query later and added that he needed to check with his office.

A Member supported the proposal. In his view, it did not depreciate or repudiate the previous decision. It would not cause any harm if the Committee interviewed the 12 candidates

The Chairperson again queried if there was any counter to this proposal. He pointed out that the subcommittee would be able to submit a motivation to the JSCI that because it felt there were 12 people who qualified; it decided to interview all 12 candidates.

The Chairperson stated that the other matter raised was whether there were other applicants whose names were not part of the documents. He sought clarity from his offce on this.

Representatives from the Chairperson’s office replied no.

The Chairperson reiterated that the applicants were all those who applied. The subcommittee would be dealing with 12 people. He asked who the 12 people were. Apart from the 12 in the document prepared by his office, he asked if Members wanted to nominate any other person.

Mr Stubbe stated that he did not have a problem nominating the 12 as reflected in the document. He noted that the one person had previously applied, his application went through Parliament and he did not succeed. Was the subcommittee going that way again? Should he be kept in light of the decision that was taken by Parliament or do we start all over again?

Ms S Dlamini-Dubazana (ANC) disagreed with shortlisting 12 people. Candidate 2 was 70 years old. In her view, this person should be a pensioner in terms of the law. Candidate 3 failed technically from the beginning as he failed to submit documents according to the advert. It was unclear as to how was passed by the Chair’s office. She was then left with 10 candidates.

The Chairperson replied that the Member was correct on the second point and his conclusion was that this was not an application. This person was asking for advice about what they should do. The JSCI had made it clear not only in terms of the current advert but even before that the process was starting afresh. It was not the subcommittee’s fault that the person did not understand the subcommittee. “We started this process afresh. There is no application. The process was starting afresh”.

On the first issue, the Chairperson asked what the Member would say about him as he was 74 years old, was the Member suggesting that he go on pension or that he was not “thinking straight”. He believed he was “thinking straight”. He said she was being ageist. This was not allowed in terms of the country’s democratic practise and experience to disqualify a person on the basis of age. The main point that the Members was making was that she was looking at 10 people.

Mr Skosana said that after his colleague had picked up the technicalities around candidates 2 and 3, he withdrew the first proposal and supported Ms Ms Dlamini-Dubazana’s view to come up with 10 names.

The Chairperson sought confirmation if the subcommittee agreed to deal with 10 names.

Mr Parkies commented on the matter affecting the candidate who failed to submit all the documents. He stated that regardless of the resolution from Parliament, the JSCI was not explicit that the people who applied previously can apply or not and for future reference and for application of the principle of consistency such matters need to be ironed out.

The Chairperson disagreed with this remark and said that the advert indicated in bold letters at the end as follows “This is a readvertisement. Applicants who previously applied are welcome to submit a new application”. If the person had read the entire advert they would have know they could have reapplied.

The Chairperson stated that the subcommittee was dealing with 10 people who were being shortlisted. He sought clarity on who the 10 people were.

Mr Stubbe read out the following names:

 

  1. Mr Clinton Paul Davids
  2. Prof Sethlomamaru Isaac Dintwe
  3. Adv Jayashree Govender
  4. Mr Smanga Phillip Jele
  5. Mr Andile Barnabas Kilifele
  6. Mr Mampogoane Petrus Nchabeleng
  7. Mr Victor Euclid Ngidi
  8. Mr Brightboy Nhlakanipho Nkontwana
  9. Dr Nyelisani Clarence Tshitereke
  10. Prof Bruce William Watson

The Chairperson asked if there were different views.

The Committee accepted the names

The Chairperson read out and spelled out the names for the media. He indicated that the Committee would issue a statement later in the day that would be circulated.

The Chairperson said the interviews would take place over two days - on 8 and 9 November - next week. Five will be interviewed on the first day and the other five on the second day. The intention was that this matter is served to the House before Parliament rises this year.

The Chairperson stressed that everything said describing the process related to decisions that the JSCI took. This was a reconfrmation of everything that was said. There would be longer sessions when the interview took place.

The Chairperson thanked everyone and adjourned the meeting.

Documents

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