Head of SAPS crime intelligence still has no security clearance

23 July 2017 - 15:50
By Kyle Cowan And Mzilikazi Wa Afrika
Minister of State Security David Mahlobo was allegedly approached by Major-General Pat Mokushane in a bid to have the required vetting process abolished.
Image: Trevor Samson Minister of State Security David Mahlobo was allegedly approached by Major-General Pat Mokushane in a bid to have the required vetting process abolished.

South Africa’s crime intelligence boss has still not received top secret security clearance‚ despite being in the job for more than a month.

TimesLIVE can reveal that the delay in giving clearance to newly-appointed acting head of national Crime Intelligence‚ Major-General Pat Mokushane‚ is because of his failure to provide a host of documents‚ including his bank statements‚ proof of tertiary qualifications and his matric certificate.

Revelations that Mokushane‚ 57‚ has failed to provide the most basic of documents brings into question the vetting process that allowed him clearance for his former post as head of crime intelligence in Gauteng.

TimesLIVE has reliably learnt that Mokushane tried in vain to approach the Minister of State Security‚ David Mahlobo‚ in a bid to have the required vetting process abolished.

A source who declined to be quoted or named‚ said Mokushane had managed to get a Security Vetting Panel meeting scheduled for July 4 postponed. The panel‚ according to correspondence‚ was due to discuss issues surrounding his security clearance.

He allegedly told Mahlobo‚ who declined to comment on Saturday‚ that he could not provide the documents being requested by investigators and wanted Mahlobo to intervene. The source claimed Mahlobo told Mokushane to follow the process.

SAPS spokeswoman Major-General Sally de Beer declined to comment on detailed questions sent last week‚ and did not confirm or deny that Mokushane now had clearance.

“This matter will be dealt with internally and not via the media‚” she said.

Previous media reports indicated that Mokushane had a criminal record for violating the National Road Traffic Act in 2002‚ was arrested in 1993 for possession of suspected stolen property and was a member “in good standing” of the Umkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans Association.

TimesLIVE has learned however‚ that the issue of his criminal record does not feature as a reason for the refusal of his security clearance.

Mokushane was appointed on June 17 and caused an uproar within his first week when he announced a restructuring of the crime intelligence national head office in Pretoria. His decision‚ which is being challenged in court by the South African Police Union‚ will see head office members redeployed to stations of their choosing.

Parliament’s Standing Committee on Police in June also raised the issue of his security clearance‚ asking acting national commissioner Lieutenant-General Lesetja Mothiba why he had followed through with the appointment before having the clearance certificate “on the file”.

“I will agree I must have obtained the document itself‚” Mothiba said in response‚ adding that Mokushane had been “very busy” in the days after his appointment‚ a possible reason for not handing documents in.

Mokushane told the committee he was still in possession of his old clearance issued four years ago and that he had already gone through the polygraph test‚ a part of the vetting process‚ and claimed to have passed.

“So the clearance is granted‚” he said.

This‚ it appears‚ was misleading.

Correspondence dated June 29‚ 2017‚ two days after Mokushane and Mothiba appeared before parliament shows the outstanding documents were the reason for declining Mokushane’s clearance. The emails were exchanged between the Section Commander of Vetting Investigation in the Counter and Security Intelligence Unit‚ Colonel JA Tshabangu‚ and his commanding officer‚ Brigadier MA Ntuli.

“Apart from the Counter Intelligence investigation the under listed documents had still not been obtained from the applicant and would in accordance to the National Strategic Intelligence Act be the basis of for the panel to consider the Security Competency Determination‚” Tshabangu wrote.

The documents listed as not submitted include his matric certificate‚ proof of acquired tertiary qualification‚ Companies and Intellectual Properties Commission (CIPC) certificates with regard to his three companies‚ and full financial disclosure.

It is unlikely‚ therefore‚ he was unaware of a request for these documents at the time of appearing before the parliamentary committee.

Adding fuel to the fire are revelations his former personal assistant admitted to dipping into the State Security Account on a monthly basis after failing a polygraph test. She took R10‚000 and wrote it off as expenses for handlers.

The PA also claimed to have been asked by Mokushane to contact his business associates outside the police from his office‚ for which he gave her R500 airtime.

Despite an investigation being ongoing into these claims‚ Ntuli wrote back to Tshabangu‚ expressing the opinion the security clearance should be granted immediately.

Mokushane was sent questions on Saturday‚ but did not respond.