JOHANNESBURG — The producers of a South African reality show are facing flak over their decision to air the series just two days after the murder of one of its stars — the girlfriend of double-amputee track star Oscar Pistorius, who has been accused of the crime.
Reeva Steenkamp, the model and aspiring actress whose bloody body was discovered Valentine’s Day morning in Pistorius’ home, thought she’d landed her big break in “Tropika Island of Treasure.”
The series, in which celebrity contestants compete in challenges and games to win R1 million ($113,000), bowed its fifth season on pubcaster SABC Feb. 16.
Series creator and exec producer Samantha Moon told the BBC she had consulted the victim’s family before deciding to air the show, but the Steenkamps claim they were never contacted by Moon or the SABC.
The pubcaster defended its choice. Moon said in a statement that airing the show was “what (Steenkamp) would have wanted.”
The show’s website now includes condolences to Steenkamp’s family and friends.
Steenkamp and Pistorius were tabloid fixtures.