June 12, 2023

Controversy Shrouds Miss South Africa Contestant

One of the top 12 finalists in the Miss South Africa (SA) Contest has been accused of bullying a classmate while in high school.

Stephanie Weil, CEO of the Miss SA organisation, told an international publication on Monday, 12 June that she had “no comment to make” about the allegations levelled against one of the contestants, Levern “Donatella” José.

The top 12 finalists were announced on Friday, 9 June, however not everyone was happy to hear about the news. Shortly after the announcement, one Twitter user named “Katchokoe” took to the social media platform to share her experiences with José.

“@Levern_Jose and her friends bullied and tormented my friend and I for two years [while I was] in high school,” Katchokoe started tweeting, before sharing a story about how the beauty queen had allegedly physically and verbally abused her in 2017 and 2018.

“I really look up to the Miss SA pageant and the fact that they’re giving a platform to a bully, especially when the pageant stands for the complete opposite, is off-putting and concerning,” Katchokoe added.

The thread received mixed responses, with some accusing the Twitter user of being jealous of José, while others added their own anecdotes about similar experiences with the contestant. José has not yet publicly responded to the allegations.

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