Jeffrey Donson to stay on as Kannaland mayor, Icosa accuses media of creating negative narrative
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Cape Town - Kannaland mayor Jeffrey Donson has confirmed to Independent Media that he will not be stepping down over public outrage linked to his rape conviction.
His claim to power came after the ANC in the Western Cape went into a coalition with the Independent Civic Organisation of South Africa (Icosa), of which Donson is a member.
Donson was convicted of statutory rape and indecent assault while he was Kannaland mayor in 2008. His victim was 15 years old. After lodging an appeal in the Western Cape High Court, Donson’s five-year sentence was reduced to a wholly suspended term of imprisonment, correctional supervision, a R20 000 fine and a rehabilitation programme for sex offenders.
Icosa’s provincial chairperson David Kamfer has accused the media of creating a negative narrative against Donson.
“The sudden negative media coverage is a well-orchestrated agenda to diminish the good work done by Icosa for the community of Kannaland and to impugn the constitutional rights of the community to elect public officials of their choice,” he said.
Kamfer further defended Donson, saying he never had knowledge of the rape victim being underage at the time of the incident in 2004.
He stressed that the life of Donson had always been in the public eye as he “has been a public figure for the past 25 years” and that Donson had never hidden parts of his life from the public.
“He was convicted of statutory rape and indecent assault in 2008 of a minor who lived as a life partner of a 50- year-old man for some time, and as such, had no knowledge of her age at the time and assumed that she was of legal age,” said Kamfer.
“To want to punish him again by forcing his removal as executive mayor would be tantamount to double jeopardy, a principle prohibited in terms of our law and democracy.”