Former SABC journalist Cliff Saunders has denied that he worked for the apartheid-era National Intelligence Service for decades and for the post-1994 intelligence service, a Sunday newspaper reported.

The Afrikaans newspaper Rapport quoted Saunders as denying the allegations in a statement sent to the paper.

"My work, whoever it was done for, was meant to promote the welfare, stability and safety of the country," the statement said.

Media reports last weekend claimed that Saunders was involved in a dispute with South Africa's intelligence services over payments for spying activities and that he had sent a letter to Intelligence Minister Joe Nhlanhla demanding payment of R100 000 for breach of contract.

Saunders is alleged to have worked for the National Intelligence Agency in London from 1995, and to have recruited another journalist to spy on the Inkatha Freedom Party. - Sapa