Pancho Campo robbed at gun point in South Africa

Event organiser Pancho Campo found himself in a sticky situation on a recent visit to South Africa. He told his story to Felicity Carter.

Pancho Campo/Taken from Facebook with permission
Pancho Campo/Taken from Facebook with permission

Spanish businessman Pancho Campo was kidnapped and robbed at gunpoint outside Cape Town on Saturday, October 12th.

According to the police report, Campo had been at a friend’s house inside the Dolphin Beach Hotel complex at Table View. Some time after midnight, his friend ordered an Uber to take Campo back to the Southern Sun Waterfront hotel in Cape Town.

“I walked from the apartment to the main entrance of the complex and informed the security guard that I was waiting for an Uber,” Campo wrote in the report. “After five or six minutes this security guard told me that the car was waiting at the roundabout and that I was easier for me to walk 100 m instead of waiting at the security gate.” Campo walked to the car and said he was “surprised to see another guy sitting next to the driver, but I did not pay much attention.”

Thirty minutes later, the driver said he had to stop for petrol, and asked Campo for money. After another 30 minutes went by, Campo asked the driver if he was lost.

At that point, Campo’s phone and cash – about $133 – was seized by the driver’s companion. The man then pulled a gun from the glove compartment and threatened to shoot if Campo didn’t provide more money.

“I continued to beg him to take me back to my hotel and give me my phone back, because I could see that my wife was calling again,” wrote Campo.

By then it was about 4.30am. The driver stopped the car and dumped Campo on the street and drove off, leaving him with a bruised head and knee. “I started walking until I saw a sign that said Paarl,” wrote Campo. “Realising that I was walking in the opposite direction of Cape Town,” he turned around and kept walking.

Finally, he was picked up by a police car and taken to a police station to give a statement.

“The worst part was to learn, at my arrival at the hotel, that my wife heard everything through my phone, specially when they threatened me with the gun,” Campo wrote to Meininger’s. “She heard, ‘give us more money or I will shoot you’ and me begging for my life.”

Campo was in South Africa to help organise the upcoming W12 Future of Water Conference, which will bring together leaders from international cities facing water shortages. The headline speaker will be Arnold Schwarzenegger, former governor of California.

Pancho Campo, an event organiser, has created a series of significant climate change conferences, including the recent Climate Change Leadership summit in Porto, which featured Al Gore as a keynote speaker. Barack Obama was the keynote speaker in 2018. Campo is a former MW.

Felicity Carter

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