World-renowned Paralympian Oscar Pistorius was released on parole on Friday after serving just under a decade behind bars for the murder of his model girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp in 2013.
“The Department of Correctional Services [DCS] is able to confirm that Oscar Pistorius is a parolee, effectively from 5 January 2024. He was admitted into the system of Community Corrections and is now at home,” stated the DCS in a statement released.
Speaking on VOC’s Breakfast show on Monday, Attorney and Steenkamp family spokesperson, Tania Koen said the family has accepted Pistorius’ fate as it aligns with the legal framework of South Africa.
“June (Reeva’s mother) and Barry (Reeva’s late father) have always said they abide by the law and they believe in the South African legal system and as long as proceedings are fair. So, they have expected it and accepted it,” explained Koen.
According to Koen a victim-offender dialogue has taken place between the two parties.
“In June 2022, Oscar met with Barry for a victim-offender dialogue in Gqeberha. However, June opted not to be part of the dialogue and further went onto oppose his bail in March 2023 on behalf of herself and Barry,” said Koen.
There are three options that victims can express to the parole board before the release of an offender.
“When the offender is considered by the parole board, the victim can do one of three things:
- A victim can oppose the bail
- A victim can make a victim-impact statement
- A victim can inform the parole board of the conditions they wish to have implemented upon the release
In Reeva’s case, June imposed two conditions for Pistorius is that he must attend anger management courses and Gender Based Violence (GBV) workshops,” added Koen.
The family want to send a strong message to society in the wake of Reeva’s killing that GBV will not be tolerated under any circumstances.
A study recorded in 2010 shows that 51% of women in SA say they have experienced GBV, with 76% of men saying they have perpetrated GBV at one stage in their lives. A similar study revealed that one in five women report that they have experienced violence at the hands of a partner. This is according to Africa Health Organization.