South Africans will be safe during and after elections – minister

Police Minister, General Bheki Cele, has launched the National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure (NATJOINTS) Coordination Centre. This just days ahead of the country’s National and Provincial General Elections. 

“The NATJOINTS Coordination Centre (NCC) is born from past experiences learnt. [This was] when government formulated a coordinated response to the Covid-19 pandemic…
As government we soon realised the importance of reconfiguring the way we would deal with the challenges of the deadly virus, as a collective. The NCC underpins the ‘whole of government’ approach to the country’s security,” said the Minister. He was speaking at the official opening of the NCC. The centre is based at the country’s largest training college of the South African Police Service, west of Pretoria.

He said the opening of the NCC also came just days before the country prepares for the national and provincial elections, on May 29, 2024.

Centre not just for elections

“So while the timing of the opening may be opportune, establishing a nerve centre of such magnitude, to house the National Joint Operational Intelligence Structures, has been a long time coming.”

The centre serves as a central point of contact for the coordination of information.

“It is here where the reporting of incidents [will be done]. And swift, prompt and coordinated response to any eventuality within the mandate of NATJOINTS will unfold.

“The building that houses the NCC has been renovated and repurposed to meet all needs and purposes. This process has taken four months,” Cele said.

Cele said meetings of the NATJOINTS and all stakeholders will take place in the NCC. These are the Justice, Crime Prevention and Security (JCPS) Directors General and the Priority Committees. Also the work streams established by the NATJOINTS.

“The building layout accommodates the National Joint Operational Centre (NATJOC). It also has facilities to accommodate one or more Mission Area Joint Operational Centres. These are known as MAJOC,” he said.

State-of-the-art centre

He said the centre has been fitted with the necessary equipment and machinery as well as technology advancements. This to ensure that all agencies work seamlessly “with agility and in unison against any and every threat that may face the country”.

“The facility is fitted with state-of-the-art data network and communication systems. It also has audio visual and advanced technical capabilities. Basically, at all times this facility will ensure that optimal situational awareness is never compromised.

“Such is critical for strategic, operational and tactical decision-making. Also for command direction of intelligence structures,” the Minister said.

The NCC will serve as the epicentre for the planning of all major events across the country. These include the upcoming elections as well as the Presidential inauguration.

“Once fully operational, including for the coming election operations, the NCC will accommodate all. These include representatives from 39 government departments, agencies, state-owned entities and private sector stakeholders within the NATJOC,” he said.

Post-elections, the NCC will continue to be utilised on a 24/7 and 365 basis. It will function as the main centre for NATJOINTS inter-departmental and inter-governmental operations.

Aimed at protecting all citizens

“This will benefit the citizens of this country. They can be assured that the NATJOINTS remains committed to service and protects law-abiding citizens. Basically all those who live within our borders,” the minister said.

Attending the event was Deputy Police Minister Cassel Mathale and National Police Commissioner Fannie Masemola. Home Affairs Minister Dr Aaron Motsoaledi and Defence Minister Thandi Modise. Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu as well as senior government officials.


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