Johannesburg – Action Society’s director of community safety, Ian Cameron, has laid charges of crimen injuria and common assault against Police Minister Bheki Cele and SAPS members who physically removed him from a community meeting this week.
The charges come after Cameron was forcibly removed by SAPS members from a community meeting in Gugulethu, on Tuesday.
Cele was expected to address the rising crime and gender-based-violence (GBV) in the community.
Cameron, who was present at the meeting, was mandated by survivors and families of victims of GBV to speak on their behalf during the community meeting.
Following Cameron’s address to the minister on his concerns, Cele shouted at Action Society’s director of community safety to “shut up and sit down”, after Cele had failed to answer questions directed to him about his inability to fulfil his constitutional mandate to protect South Africans against crime.
Cele further responded to Cameron, saying that he would not be told what to do by someone who sees him as a “garden boy”, adding that he has dedicated his entire life to fighting injustices and racism in the country.
Cameron referred to his removal as “Cele abusing his power and state resources for his own benefit”, and he further expressed his lack of faith in the work of the minister.
“Action Society will not sit down and shut up while crime in South Africa is out of control. Cele is, once again, abusing the police force for political gain and holding authority over ordinary citizens,” it said in a statement following the incident.
“The SAPS will never succeed in fighting crime, if Cele stays in his position. Action Society will, however, continue to be the voice of the voiceless where the police neglect their duty,” Cameron said.
Action Society has called on Cele to beef up the crime-prevention measures in townships such as Gugulethu, Khayelitsha, and Nyanga.
The communities are badly ravaged by crime, they said.