Narissa Subramoney
Copy rewriter
2 minute read
17 Nov 2021
4:13 pm

Action Society calls for removal of rapist Kannaland mayor

Narissa Subramoney

Jeffrey Donson was convicted of statutory rape and indecent assault in 2008.

Picture File: The Kannaland municpal council, headed up by convicted child rapist Jeffrey Donson and his fraudster deputy Werner Meshoe. Picture: Kannaland Munisipaliteit/ Facebook

Civil rights group Action Society is calling for the removal of convicted child rapist Jeffrey Donson, as mayor of Kannaland Local Municipality.

The Kannaland council, situated along the Garden Route in Little Karoo, Western Cape, elected the Independent Civic Organisation of South Africa (ICOSA) leader as executive mayor and Werner Meshoa, a convicted fraudster, as his deputy.

“Residents should know their newly elected candidates for mayor and deputy mayor are both convicted criminals,” said Action Society in a statement.

“One is a convicted child rapist that received a slap on the wrist and the other a convicted fraudster. Both these candidates were re-elected with the support of the ANC,” said the organisation.

“One of the highest paying jobs in the local municipality is filled by a child rapist and the other by a fraudster. This seems like a plot for a badly written movie script.”

Action Society wants Donson to be removed, saying “he is a dignity thief of not only his 15-year-old victim that he raped but also other victims”.

“We also call for the removal of Werner Meshoa, the deputy mayor.”

Meshoa was convicted of fraud and obstruction of justice while he was speaker of the Kannaland council.

“It is an outrage that criminals are even considered to serve in the public office,” says Action Society spokesperson Ian Cameron.

“’We shall rape the children and plunder the taxes’ seems to be a fitting slogan for the newly elected crew in the region.”

The municipal council of Kannaland consists of the DA, ANC, ICOSA and Kannaland Independent Party’s representatives.

Donson was convicted of statutory rape and indecent assault while employed as Kannaland’s mayor in 2008.

He was initially sentenced to five years in prison, but was appealed in the Western Cape High Court.

His conviction was not overturned, but he received a wholly suspended term of imprisonment, correctional supervision, a R20,000 fine and a rehabilitation programme for sex offenders.

“The government cannot say that it is fighting gender-based violence [GBV] in South Africa whilst employing [a] rapist,” Cameron said.

He said the only way to start curbing the scourge of GBV was if the justice system clamped down on perpetrators.

“The total opposite is currently happening. It seems like convicted rapists are being rewarded for their behaviour,” said Cameron.

Action Society said the electoral system was failing to keep criminals out of public service.

“With the government’s track record on crime and fraud, they should revise their policies to allow fair discrimination against individuals who have criminal offences related to schedule 8 offences,” said Cameron.

“These perpetrators should not serve the public or be allowed to be voted in as they lost that right when they defrauded public funds or committed rape.”

The Kannaland area is famed for its cheese factories and wine routes. But the municipality has been dogged by problems with service delivery and political battles.

NOW READ: Uproar over re-election of rapist mayor and his fraudster deputy in Kannaland