Lobby group to lay formal complaint against Cele after member removed from public meeting on crime

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Action Society director for community safety, Ian Cameron.
Action Society director for community safety, Ian Cameron.
Marvin Charles
  • Action Society wants Parliament and the Public Protector to probe Bheki Cele for his outburst during an engagement in Gugulethu.
  • During a heated exchange, Ian Cameron was forcibly removed from the venue.
  • Cameron said Cele failed to act in good faith and compromised the credibility of his office.

Civil rights lobby group Action Society says it will be filing complaints against Police Minister Bheki Cele and police officers following a public outburst at a community safety event in Gugulethu, Cape Town, on Tuesday.

During a heated exchange with Cele, the group's director for community safety, Ian Cameron, was forcibly removed from the venue.

Cameron said he was "spinelessly removed" from the meeting by police officers.

"The minister failed to answer questions about his inability to fulfil his constitutional mandate to protect South Africans against crime. Survivors and families of victims of gender-based violence mandated Action Society to speak on their behalf during the meeting," he said. 

Action Society said it would lodge a complaint with the Public Protector in terms of the Executive Members' Ethics Bill and its Code of Conduct.

The organisation said Cele failed to act in good faith and compromised the credibility and integrity of his office.

Action Society also intends to submit a complaint with Parliament's Office of the Registrar of Members' Interests.

"We will lodge a third complaint with the Independent Police Investigative Directorate to investigate the misconduct by the members of the SAPS when they forcefully removed me from the meeting and wrongfully deprived me of my right to liberty and bodily integrity.

READ MORE | 'Shut up!' Cele rips into lobby group leader, then police drag him away

"Finally, I will lodge a criminal complaint against Cele and the SAPS members who physically accosted me," he said. A community meeting in Gugulethu descended into a screaming match after Cele told Cameron to "shut up".

Cele was responding to concerns raised at the meeting and Cameron, in particular, when the outburst occurred.

Cameron blamed the police for not deploying enough resources to fight crime in the area.

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