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Sebolai begged Tshabalala's family to forgive him

Donald Sebolai stabbed his then girlfriend during an argument at his Soweto home in 2014.

Donald Sebolai in the holding cells after being sentenced to an effective 20 years in prison. Picture: Mia Lindeque/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Convicted killer Donald Sebolai says he pleaded with Dolly Tshabalala's family to "find it in their hearts to forgive him" after being sentenced to an effective 20 years in prison.

Sebolai stabbed his then girlfriend during an argument at his Soweto home in 2014.

The High Court sitting in Palm Ridge sentenced Sebolai earlier today, with the judge saying the intention was to send out a strong message to society.

WATCH: Sebolai maintains his innocence despite 20-year sentence

Sebolai says he would like to be have an opportunity to speak to Tshabalala's family, especially her young daughter.

Tshabalala's mother, Dikeledi Marawa, says she is not happy with the sentence and wanted a much harsher penalty.

Sebolai says he understands the family is still angry.

The former radio DJ says he will apply for leave to appeal both and sentence.

SEBOLAI SHOCKED AT HIS SENTENCE

The convicted murderer says he is shocked by the court's decision on his lengthy sentence.

The former DJ maintains he is innocent and that Tshabalala stabbed herself.

"I did not take the knife and stab her, it was a fight and I was trying to disarm the deceased. It's the truth."

But Judge Cassim Moosa says Sebolai is a violent and abusive man who deserves the harsh sentence.

Moosa also says the sentence is appropriate and that he hopes this will deter other offenders from gender based violence.

He added that a minimum sentence of 15 years would not be sufficient and based on the high level of gender based violence in the country, this sentence would aim to deter others from committing the same offence.

#DonaldSebolai [WATCH] Donald Sebolai says he is shocked by the sentence. ML pic.twitter.com/e5lO0NaDHU