Can state intelligence help prevent violent protests?

Can state intelligence help prevent violent protests? – Events


South Africa has been rocked by university student protests driven by demands for free education. Many incidents of intimidation, violence and destruction of property have accompanied the protests. This comes at a time when violence associated with public protests is increasing in the country.

The State Security Agency (SSA) was recently tasked with gathering intelligence on those involved in violent protests. Should SSA have a role in addressing violent protests, and if so, what should it be? How should its involvement be regulated and can SSA be held to account by the public on this issue?

The Minister of State Security David Mahlobo will reflect on these questions, along with Professor Jane Duncan who authored Protest Nation: the Right to Protest in South Africa, and other civil society experts.

For more information and to RSVP, visit:

Chair: Judith February, Consultant, Governance, Crime and Justice, ISS


  • David Mahlobo, Minister of State Security
  • Professor Jane Duncan, University of Johannesburg
  • Mbalenhle Matandela, Regional Coordinator, Right to Know Campaign, Centre for Applied Legal Studies, University of the Witwatersrand


Helen Chanda Phone: +27 12 346 9500 Email:


Gareth Newham Phone: +27 12 346 9500 Email:

This event is made possible with support from the Hanns Seidel Foundation and the Open Society Foundation. The ISS is also grateful for support from the following members of the ISS Partnership Forum: the governments of Australia, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and the USA.