Home South African Meet Ian Cameron, the man who confronted Bheki Cele

Meet Ian Cameron, the man who confronted Bheki Cele


Ian Cameron said the focus should be that 67 people are murdered every day in the country, and that’s what the fight should be about.

Ian Cameron. Picture: Supplied

A VIRAL video of Ian Cameron, 32, has had tongues wagging for a week after the director of Community Safety at non-profit organisation, Action Society, had a confrontation with Police Minister Bheki Cele.

We talked to the self-proclaimed civil rights activist to find out more about his career and the issues he wants to tackle.

Cameron holds a police science qualification from the University of South Africa (Unisa). He also completed certificates in local government administration and incident command systems, among others.

The founder of firearms.co.za, a website that informs people of everything that has to do with guns, worked with AfriForum as the organisation’s head of community safety for eight years.

Cameron joined Action Society in 2021 after being approached by the group to create a case oversight model for gender-based violence cases.

“I feel very strongly about the fight against violence towards women and children, but also about the fact that we have such a low conviction rate in the country for all violent crimes,” he said.

According to Cameron, Action Society does several national campaigns, such as dealing with the DNA backlog, but its main priority is to develop something at ground level that will assist ordinary South Africans who can’t afford to appoint private investigators or get legal help.

On Cele, he said it’s not the minister alone who has to go to fix the country’s policing issues, but it would be a start.

“He has done a lot of damage, but so have his predecessors. For almost two decades, we did not have career cops as our national commissioners. This is a broad issue, and we can’t expect policing to improve without fixing it from the top.

“We have to start with getting a competent police minister, restructure police management, and determine who has been appointed because of merit and not because of political affiliation.”

There has been speculation that Cameron wants to see a private police force enforcing the law in the country. He rubbished these claims and said such a force is not needed because private security companies already do more than half the police’s work.

Cameron said certain figures on social media could be quite malicious in the assumptions that they make without having any context of what he does.

Last week, in a response to the Action Society head, Minister Bheki Cele said: “I am not going to take any nonsense from someone who regards me as a garden boy today because you regard me as a garden boy. You come here, shut up, shut up, shut up.”

According to Cameron, Cele was simply deflecting from the facts. “I did not go to Gugulethu as a white man. I went as a citizen who has been mandated by innocent victims in that area to assist them to get justice. South Africans are frustrated that the race card is pulled as soon as someone is challenged with facts.”

Cameron said the focus should be that 67 people are murdered every day in the country, and that’s what the fight should be about.

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