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Steenkamp's TV farewell

By Nomaswazi Nkosi | 2013-02-18 07:05:36.0

LAW graduate and model Reeva Steenkamp was a "very sincere and intelligent girl".

This is how DA Les, real name Lesley Mampe, remembers the 30-year-old woman he featured with in the SABC1 reality show Tropika Island of Treasure.

"We had an awesome time. She had an awesome time. It was a pleasure being on the show," he said yesterday.

"Though she had a phobia about heights she was able to conquer it on the show. She will be sorely missed," he said.

The first episode of the fifth season of the show aired on Saturday, three days after Steenkamp's death, allegedly at the hands of her boyfriend and Paralympian Oscar Pistorius.

"After consultation with the Steenkamp family her mother expressed her desire for the show to continue," SABC1 publicist Phillip Mabitsela said in a statement about the channel's decision to go ahead with the show.

The show was filmed last year in Jamaica, where a host of celebrities and other contestants competed for a cash prize of R1-million.

Another celebrity who featured on the show is rapper AKA, real name Kiernan Forbes, who also expressed his condolences to the Steenkamp family in a statement.

"I am saddened by the loss of Reeva Steenkamp. I was fortunate to get to know her during the filming of Tropika Island Of Treasure. She was truly a wonderful person with a very happy persona.

"My sympathies go out to her family at this time. She will be truly missed by many. May her soul rest in peace," the statement read.

Vukile Madlala, a publicist for the channel, said it was too early to know whether Steenkamp's death boosted the viewership of the first episode.

Madlala said her death might have prompted increased viewership, but added that the 6.30pm time slot was generally very popular.