Democratic Alliance Member of Parliament Dianne Kohler Barnard has called on the State Security Agency (SSA) to explain to South Africans why it has suspended its head of the foreign branch Robert McBride.

The State Security Agency (SSA) has confirmed that it has suspended its head of the foreign branch Robert McBride but has declined to divulge details.

It is not clear whether the suspension is related to a weekend newspaper article that reported that four South African spies were caught and left stranded in Maputo, Mozambique, after a failed SSA operation in that country earlier this year.

Kohler Barnard says South Africans have the right to know the truth.

McBride is unlikely to go down without a fight, as he had done previously in Ekurhuleni, Gauteng, when he was the metro police chief and at the Independent Police Investigative Directorate when he squared off with the likes of former Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation head Berning Ntlemeza, former National Police commissioner Khomotso Phahlane and former Police Minister Nathi Nhleko.

Zondo inquiry: Robert McBride on his suspension & the weakening of Ipid: