Ramaphosa appoints new State Security Agency head, key NPA appointments

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa. Picture: REUTERS/Edgar Su

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa. Picture: REUTERS/Edgar Su

Published Feb 28, 2022


Johannesburg - President Cyril Ramaphosa has appointed Thembisile Majola as the new director-general of the State Security Agency with effect from March 1, 2022.

Ramaphosa has also made key appointments to the National Prosecuting Authority, with advocate Andrea Johnson replacing Hermione Cronje as the new head of the NPA’s Investigating Directorate from Tuesday after she resigned two months ago.

The Presidency said Johnson’s appointment came at a time when the country’s efforts were geared towards acting decisively against individuals involved in state capture and corruption.

Regarding Majola’s appointment at the SSA, the Presidency said she would head the intelligence agency for three years and the move followed a commitment by Ramaphosa to fill key vacancies in the security services as communicated in his State of the Nation Address earlier in February.

Majola is a former deputy minister of energy and was South Africa’s ambassador to Senegal, Mauritania, Cape Verde, Gambia and Guinea Bissau.

“She has held several positions in the Presidency and was a deputy coordinator in the National Intelligence Coordinating Committee (NICOC).

“She was the observer on behalf of President Cyril Ramaphosa to the trilateral negotiations on the Grand Renaissance Dam during South Africa’s tenure as chair of the African Union in 2020,” said acting Presidency spokesperson Tyrone Seale.

Commenting on Majola’s appointment, Ramaphosa said she was expected to stabilise the intelligence service and hit the ground running, from Tuesday.

“The appointment of Ambassador Thembi Majola to this position is an important part of our work to stabilise the country’s intelligence services. Her extensive experience in government, international relations and security makes her well placed to lead the reform and rebuilding of the State Security Agency.”

“Her appointment is expected to give greater impetus to the implementation of the report of the SSA High Level Review Panel and the recommendations of the Expert Panel into the July 2021 unrest,” said the president.

Ramaphosa thanked Loyiso Jafta and Gab Msimanga, who had both acted as the director-general of the SSA when Arthur Fraser left the role four years ago.

At the NPA, the Presidency said Johnson was an experienced senior deputy director in the NPA with more than 25 years’ experience.

This included experience in district, regional and high court prosecutions.

“She spent 10 years in the Directorate of Special Operations and has worked in the NPA’s Priority Crimes Litigation Unit and Organised Crime Section.

“She is currently serving on the NPA Task Force that is overseeing the implementation of the State Capture Report recommendations,” said Seale.

Ramaphosa said Cronje had laid the foundations and now Johnson was expected to take the office of the ID to the next phase.

“Adv. Andrea Johnson will be expected to lead the Investigating Directorate into the next phase of its work as the people of South Africa look to the criminal justice system to bring those responsible for state capture and corruption to book.

“In this regard, the Investigating Directorate will be able to draw on the extensive information compiled by the State Capture Commission and is being strengthened through the allocation of more resources.”

Other appointments in the NPA included Adv. N. Somaru as Director of Public Prosecutions: Free State, Adv. M.R. Makhari-Sekhaolelo as Director of Public Prosecutions: North West and Adv. N.A. Bell as Director of Public Prosecutions: Western Cape.


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Cyril Ramaphosa