Police, Defence and Intelligence

Civilian Secretariat for Police
Independent Police Investigative Directorate
Private Security Industry Regulatory Authority
South African Police Service
Department of Military Veterans
Armaments Corporation of SA
Intelligence services




Department of Police

PoliceThe Department of Police is responsible for law-enforcement services, policy determination, direction and overall execution of the department’s mandate in relation to relevant legislation. The Minister of Police is responsible for determining national policing policy (Section 206 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa of 1996) and the overall execution of the department’s mandate, in relation to the key pieces of legislation. 

Over the medium term, the department’s key focus will be on implementing the national policing strategy. Key among the interventions that this strategy proposes are: improving community safety; reducing gender- based violence and femicide (GBVF); and combating serious and organised crimes.

Improving community safety

To ensure a coordinated response to building safer communities, the National Policing Strategy was approved in 2022/23. In line with the strategy, over the period ahead, the department will focus on stabilising crime in the top 30 high-contact crime areas that collectively contribute about 50% of reported contact crimes across the country.

This includes combating the various contributors to crime, such as illegal firearms, liquor, drugs, illicit mining and undocumented foreign nationals. In support of this work, the department aimed to ensure that the stations in the top 30 high-contact crime areas have optimal human resources and sufficient operational equipment.

The department also planned to develop and implement a detective service recovery plan over the medium term. The purpose of the plan is to improve the detection of contact crimes at police stations through better case docket management, which is in turn expected to improve communication between investigating officers and victims, and cooperation with the National Prosecuting Authority.

Combating GBVF

Over the medium term, the department’s Visible Policing and Detective Services programmes planned to implement interventions in line with the national policing strategy that are aimed at combating GBVF and improving support to victims.

Interventions include: establishing GBV desks in all police stations and providing in-service training to designated employees working at these desks; developing, implementing and monitoring action plans on GBV and sexual offences at stations in the top 30 GBV hotspots; and the continued implementation of measures to eradicate the DNA tracing and verication backlog linked to crime scenes, as this is critical as supporting evidence in investigations, as well as for updating the DNA database.

The department will also ensure that every police station has a dedicated, victim-friendly room for victims of GBV, including sexual assault.

Addressing serious and organised crimes

In line with interventions identified in the national policing strategy to prevent and investigate crime that threatens the economy, activities in the Detective Services programme over the medium term were aimed at addressing the increase in crimes targeted at critical infrastructure, such as during local construction projects. To combat this problem, 20 economic infrastructure task teams have been established in identified hotspots. The multidisciplinary teams encompass visible policing, crime intelligence and detective services.

To ensure a coordinated approach to combating corruption in the public and private sectors over the period ahead, the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DPCI) was expected to continue working closely with government
stakeholders and agencies such as the anticorruption task team, the national anticorruption advisory council and the multidisciplinary fusion centre, which targets priority financial crimes. This includes implementing recommendations from the state capture commission.

The directorate, along with the detective services and crime intelligence units, has established a steering committee to coordinate all matters related to the investigation and combating of cybercrime. The committee has developed a
strategy and standard operating procedures for investigation in the police, as required in terms of Section 26 of the Cybercrime Act of 2020.

The committee aimed to collaborate with other national and international law enforcement agencies over the medium term to enhance investigations through the establishment of cyber investigation disciplines that include online,
open source, social media, digital forensic, intrusion and unauthorised access investigations. These interventions were expected to enable the department to successfully close 72% of registered serious organised crime related project investigations per year over the next three years

Preventing, combating and investigating money laundering and terror financing

The DPCI aimed to intensify its focus on combating money laundering and terror financing, and on investigating serious corruption and other high-risk areas such as narcotics, tax evasion, fraud and corruption, and other matters referred by the Special Investigating Unit.

These priorities are in line with the directorate’s strategic and operational plans, and the findings outlined in the Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) evaluation report of South Africa. These include the need for law enforcement agencies to: address risks, threats and vulnerabilities relating to money laundering and terror financing; implement proactive identification and investigation methods for money laundering networks and professional enablers; address internal capacity and skills gaps; and strengthen the use of financial intelligence in money laundering and terror financing investigations. As such, over the medium term, the directorate aimed to increase the number of requests to the Financial Intelligence Centre on money laundering from 86 to 124, and on terror financing from 151 to 218.

To implement the FATF standards and enhance the directorate’s capacity in strategic competencies, an additional 2 647 posts are expected to be filled in 2023/24 and 2024/25.

The DPC also planned to leverage existing capacity and financial intelligence by adopting a proactive approach of identifying and pursuing high-level, complex and serious cases of money laundering.

The National Police Commissioner answers directly to the Minister of Police.

Entities reporting to the Minister of Police are the:

Civilian Secretariat for Police

The CSPS was established in terms of the CSPS Act of 2011 and Section 208 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa of 1996, which provides for the establishment of a civilian secretariat for the police service to function under the direction of the Minister of Police. 

In terms of the Act, the secretariat’s mandate is to conduct civilian oversight of the police service and provide policy and strategic support to the Minister, including administrative support in relation to his international obligations. The Act also mandates responsibility on the secretariat to monitor the implementation of the Domestic Violence Act of 1998 by the SAPS.

Over the medium term, the department planned to continue developing policies and legislation for the police sector; facilitate events such as imbizos and public participation programmes to encourage community participation in the fight against crime; and assess and monitor the performance of the police service in relation to its constitutional mandate and other legal prescripts affecting its work, such as the Domestic Violence Act of 1998.

The department planned to finalise six bills over the medium term – the SAPS Amendment Bill, the IPID Amendment Bill, the Stock Theft Amendment Bill, the Firearms Control Amendment Bill, the Second-hand Goods Amendment Bill and the Civilian Secretariat for Police Service Amendment Bill. The Criminal Law (Forensic Procedures) Amendment Bill and the Protection of Constitutional Democracy Against Terrorist and Related Activities Amendment Bill, which were finalised in 2022/23, were expected to be enacted over the period ahead.

The department also planned to consult on and finalise the development of the national policing policy over the medium term, which will entail reviewing existing policing policy to identify gaps and make policy proposals to fast-track
the transformation and professionalisation of the police service. It also planned to continue working with key stakeholders such as The Presidency, the Department of Cooperative Governance and premiers’ offices to facilitate the implementation of the integrated crime and violence prevention strategy.

The department aimed to facilitate 24 izimbizo and public participation programmes in municipalities over the next three years, and conduct three anti‐crime campaigns per year to enhance communities’ awareness of crime
prevention and other interventions such as community policing and safety forums. As part of its efforts to transform and improve case management in the police related to GBV, the department aimed to assess and compile two reports per year over the medium term on the SAPS’s implementation of and compliance with the Domestic Violence Act of 1998.

Independent Police Investigative Directorate

The IPID exercises its functions in accordance with the IPID Act of 2011. The Act gives effect to the provisions of Section 206(6) of the Constitution, which provides for the establishment of an independent police complaints body that must investigate any alleged misconduct of, or offence committed by, a member of the police service. The thrust of the directorate’s work is to investigate serious and priority crimes allegedly committed by members of the SAPS and the Municipal Police services.

The Act grants the directorate an extended mandate and changes the focus of the directorate’s work from a complaints‐driven organisation to one that prioritises investigations. It also places stringent obligations on the SAPS and the Municipal Police Services to report matters that must be investigated by the directorate, and ensures that disciplinary recommendations made by the directorate are implemented.

Over the medium term, the directorate aimed to focus on the development of a new case management system; prioritise the investigation and finalisation of cases where the victims are women, children and people with disabilities; and improve access to its services.

The number of personnel in the directorate was expected to increase from 393 in 2022/23 to 430 in 2025/26, mainly due to the appointment of interns. The directorate will continue to realign its organisational structure and streamline its functions, where necessary, for the optimal use of its limited human resources.

Only core posts, such as for investigators, that enable the directorate to address its case backlog and improve its services are expected to be filled over the period ahead.

Implementing a new case management system

The directorate’s current case management system requires costly regular enhancements and updates to suit the changing nature of its operations, as well as the payment of licensing fees. To limit these costs, over the medium term,
the directorate plans to develop a new system, which is expected to integrate seamlessly with similar systems used by other law enforcement agencies in the justice cluster to enable information sharing and collaboration on investigations.

Once implemented, the new system will enable the directorate to record and classify cases according to specific categories of importance, such as GBV, to ensure easier tracking and reporting.

The system is also expected to help the directorate address inconsistencies in its performance reporting. To save on licensing costs and future upgrades, the directorate will own the system upon completion and updates to its specifications will be developed in‐house. The new system was expected to be developed at a cost of R15 million.

Strengthening the investigation of cases where victims are vulnerable groups

In recognition that women, children and people with disabilities are particularly vulnerable in cases of death, rape, assault and torture resulting from police action, over the medium-term period, the directorate plans to give these cases
high priority. 

The new case management system will be key in enabling the directorate to track and report on the progress made. This includes the identification of areas where such cases are predominant in order to make appropriate interventions and recommendations to the police.

Improving access to services

To expand its footprint and improve access to its services, in 2022/23, the directorate partnered with provincial community safety departments in Gauteng, KwaZulu‐Natal and Western Cape to establish regional and district offices.
This was part of implementing the directorate’s broader district model, which entails sharing office space, collaborating with provincial community safety departments on investigations and monitoring police performance.

In addition to 11 district offices, the directorate has established a national task team to focus on implementing the district model more broadly across provinces over the medium term. The task team aimed to work with provinces to identify additional office space that can be used by the directorate to improve access to its services, especially in provinces with a high number of cases.

The task team will also explore the viability of partnerships with other provincial state entities.


Private Security Industry Regulatory Authority

The PSIRA was established in terms of Section 2 of the Private Security Industry Regulation Act of 2001, which replaced the Security Officers Act of 1987.

The authority is mandated to regulate the private security industry, and exercise control over the practice of the occupation of security service providers in the public and national interest, as well as in the interest of the private security industry itself. 

Over the medium term, the authority aimed to continue focusing on the implementation of its digital transformation strategy. This entails rolling out an online registration and training system, and upgrading its financial system. The
online registration system was being implemented, with full integration with the authority’s other systems set to take place over the next three years.

Given dependencies on external service providers and technical limitations with the rolling out and testing of systems related to the digital migration process, the authority has set performance outcomes moderately over the medium term. 

As such, the turnaround times for the processing of applications for security businesses and security officers over the period ahead are set to remain at four and 18, respectively.

Other initiatives planned over the medium-term period include professionalising the security industry by reviewing and upgrading training material, introducing a reaction unit to curb noncompliance with the Private Security Industry Regulation Act of 2001 and related regulations by the security industry, and establishing a business intelligence unit in the authority’s forensic and ethics department to ensure correct data analysis during forensic investigations.

The PSIRA also planned to decentralise and restructure its services over the medium term to ensure greater financial stability. Only critical vacant posts, such as for business intelligence officials, were expected to be filled over the medium term.

More than 90% (R1.7 billion) of the authority’s revenue over the medium-term period was set to be generated through the collection of annual and registration fees from private security businesses and security officers, and the remainder from the sale of renewal certificates, the training of security officers, and accreditation fees collected from training providers.

South African Police Service

The SAPS derives its powers and functions from section 205 of the Constitution and from the South African Police Service Act of 1995.

This legislation regulates the police service in terms of its core functions, which are to prevent, investigate and combat crime; maintain public order; protect and secure the inhabitants of South Africa and their property; and uphold and enforce the law.

The National Commissioner is the Accounting Officer of the SAPS. Deputy National Commissioners (under whom the divisions and components of the SAPS fall) and provincial commissioners (under whom the cluster and station commanders fall) report to the National Commissioner.

The SAPS’s policing objectives, in accordance with the provisions of Section 205 of the Constitution, are to:

  • prevent, combat and investigate crime;
  • maintain public order;
  • protect and secure the inhabitants of South Africa and their property; and
  • uphold and enforce the law.

The vision of the SAPS is to create a safe and secure environment for all people in South Africa.

The mission of the SAPS is to:

  • prevent and combat anything that may threaten the safety and security of any community;
  • investigate any crimes that threaten the safety and security of any community;
  • ensure offenders are brought to justice; and
  • participate in efforts to address the root causes of crime.

Over the medium term, the department planned to focus on improving community safety, reducing violence against women and children, and combating organised crime.


The Department of Defence (DoD) derives its mandate from Section 200 of the Constitution; the Defence Act of 2002, as amended by the Defence Amendment Act of 2010; the 1996 White Paper on Defence; and the 2015 South African Defence Review. The department is required to provide, manage, prepare and employ defence capabilities that are commensurate with the needs of South Africa.

Over the medium term, the department planned to continue focusing on protecting the country’s people and territorial integrity through internal and external operations such as safeguarding its borders, providing maritime security,
and providing support to the SAPS and other peace‐support operations in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Mozambique.

Over the medium-term period, the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) planned to continue maintaining 15 landward subunits to facilitate border safeguarding in Free State, KwaZulu‐Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga,
Northern Cape and North West.

Additional investments in vehicle and technology enhancements to maximise the impact of the subunits in reducing transnational crimes, the illegal flow of undocumented migrants and illicit economic activities are expected to amount
to R500 million in 2024/25 and R200 million in 2025/26 in the Force Employment programme.

To ensure maritime safety, in each year over the period ahead, the South African Navy will continue to conduct a targeted four coastal patrols and spend 8 000 hours at sea. The procuring or upgrading of the medium air transport capability is expected to ensure that 12 000 hours are flown per year over the medium term.

This was expected to enhance the SANDF’s capability to transport troops and equipment during urgent internal and external deployments. To ensure the department remains within the expenditure ceiling for compensation of employees, it planned to continue to implement various human resource reforms over the medium term.

These included implementing the voluntary severance packages for SANDF personnel at an estimated cost of R800 million in 2023/24, reducing the number of reserve force person days to 1.9 million per year, recruiting military skills
development system intakes every alternate calendar year, and capping the annual increases of regimental and operational allowances.

Department of Military Veterans (DMV)

The DMV derives its mandate from the Military Veterans Act of 2011, which requires it to provide national policy and standards on socio-economic support to military veterans and their dependants, including benefits and entitlements
to help realise a dignified, unified, empowered and self‐sufficient community of military veterans.

Acknowledging military veterans’ contribution to the creation of South Africa’s democracy has the potential to deepen social cohesion and national unity while redressing the inequities of the past. As such, over the medium term, the
department planned to focus on providing military veterans and their dependants with access to key benefits such as pensions, housing, healthcare and education, training and skills development programmes.

Armaments Corporation of South Africa (Armscor)

Armscor derives its mandate from the Armscor Act of 2003. Its mission is to meet the acquisition, maintenance and disposal needs of the DOD and other clients in terms of defence matériel and related products and services. In this way, the corporation maintains strategic capabilities and technologies and promotes the local defence‐related industry, ensuring that the SANDF receives quality equipment to carry out its mandate.

Over the medium term, the corporation planned to continue focusing on meeting the department’s defence matériel requirements, as well as its requirements pertaining to technology, research, development, analysis, tests and evaluation. 

To meet these requirements, Armscor aimed to ensure that 95% of the department’s capital and technology requirements over the medium term were converted into orders placed and executed.


Denel was incorporated as a private company in 1992 in terms of the Companies Act of 1973, with the South African Government as its sole shareholder. It operates in the military aerospace and landward defence environment and
provides strategic defence equipment.

The company’s broad focus over the medium term will be on implementing its turnaround plan, which entails rolling out its new operating model, restructuring and optimising its cost structure. The new operating model reduces Denel’s structure from six core business units to three – engineering, manufacturing, and maintenance and overhaul.

This change will not only result in decreased expenditure, but in the improved allocation of critical resources. It will also require that the company accelerate its disposal of non‐core assets and businesses, improve supply chain policies and align its IT infrastructure with its new organisational structure.

Castle Control Board

The Castle Control Board primarily derives its mandate from the Castle Management Act of 1993, which requires the board to preserve and protect the military and cultural heritage of the Castle of Good Hope, and to optimise its tourism potential and public accessibility. Aspects of the board’s mandate are also derived from the Defence Endowment Property and Account Act of 1922, and the National Heritage Resources Act of 1999.

Over the medium term, the board aimed to implement its revenue optimisation strategy with the aim of maintaining its viability as a self‐sufficient entity. The primary means of achieving this goal is to optimise the heritage tourism potential of the Castle of Good Hope and increase its accessibility to the broader public.

Accordingly, key activities over the medium term include delivering a comprehensive range of visitor services. These included an improved tourist guide script, better curated museums and exhibitions, an upgraded information
centre and website, better and clearer signage to allow for effective self‐guided tours and directions to the site, and an improved security system in and around the precinct to ensure the safety and wellbeing of all visitors.

Intelligence services

The mandate of the State Security Agency (SSA) is to provide government with intelligence on domestic and foreign threats or potential threats to national stability, the constitutional order, and the safety and well-being of the people of South Africa. This allows the government to implement policies to deal with potential threats and to better understand existing threats and thus improve their policies.

The SSA comprises the:

  • Domestic Branch (formerly the NIA)
  • Foreign Branch (formerly the SASS)
  • South African National Academy of Intelligence
  • National Communications Centre
  • Office for Interception Centres

In October 2022, President Cyril Ramaphosa appointed Mr Imtiaz Fazel as the Inspector-General of Intelligence for a period of five years, with effect from 1 November 2022, following approval by the National Assembly of Mr Fazel’s
nomination for the position.

Source: Official Guide to South Africa

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