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Cwele talks tough on corruption

10th May 2012

By: SA News

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The Ministry of State Security will not hesitate to take action on those in its ranks found to be involved in fraud and corruption, Minister Siyabonga Cwele has warned.

Briefing the media ahead of his Budget Vote in Parliament on Thursday, Cwele said the fight against fraud and corruption remained one of his ministry’s priorities.

“This is a cancer that steals from the most vulnerable people in our society,” the minister noted.

Cwele added that in order for the agency to be effective in fighting corruption in other state departments, the security cluster first needed to start within its own departments.

“This cancer of corruption permeates through all state departments but we have to root it out among those agencies that are supposed to be our eyes in stopping this. It permeates through the public and private sector,” he noted.

Vetting, Cwele said, was one strategy to deal with corruption and the agency was also part of the Anti-Corruption Task Team. The ministry would focus its energies on improving its vetting system.

This would include a new strategy of vetting, through automation of the vetting process and introduction of a continuous process of vetting other than periodic vetting.

This was expected to reduce backlogs in the vetting system. Vetting field units will also be rolled out, he said.

Turning to other issues, Cwele said transnational crimes such as human smuggling remained a challenge and the ministry was working with its SADC partners in this regard.

With regard to the Protection of State Information Bill, Cwele said it was now in the hands of the legislators but the ministry would continue to interact with the process in the National Council of Provinces.

He stressed that any amendments that would enhance the effectiveness of the policy the ministry was trying to implement, or improved the constitutionality of the Bill, would be taken into account.

Cwele said the ministry would continue with its international work in support of the Presidency and the Department of International Relations and Cooperation.

Particular focus will be on Africa, he added, noting the political situations in Madagascar, Mali, Sudan, South Sudan, Somalia and Guinea Bissau.

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