Oscar charitable - manager

2014-10-13 14:02
Oscar Pistorius arrives at the North Gauteng High Court. (Themba Hadebe, AP)

Oscar Pistorius arrives at the North Gauteng High Court. (Themba Hadebe, AP)

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Pretoria - Paralympian Oscar Pistorius was a global icon who was involved with various charities before his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp died, his manager Peet van Zyl testified on Monday.

"Mr Pistorius was a global sporting icon before the shooting who raised awareness...[of] various aspects...with no renumeration," Van Zyl said in the High Court in Pretoria.

"I am yet to meet a more accommodating, a more humble person... He would also go the extra mile to spend time with people."

Van Zyl brought documents to court showing Pistorius's involvement in charities around the world.

He highlighted and handed up letters and correspondence from various people who had worked with Pistorius and who said it was a pleasure working with him.

On 12 September Pistorius was found guilty of the culpable homicide of Steenkamp, but not guilty of her murder.

JudgeThokozile Masipa found him guilty of discharging a firearm in public, when he shot from his friend Darren Fresco's Glock pistol under a table at Tasha's restaurant in Melrose Arch, Johannesburg, in January 2013.

Pistorius had claimed he thought there was a burglar in his toilet when he fired four shots through the locked door in the early hours of 14 February last year, killing Steenkamp. The State had argued he killed her during an argument.

'A very proud person'

Van Zyl said Pistorius sometimes used his own money to pay for other people's prosthetic legs.

"Mr Pistorius has always been a very proud person and he never wanted to let people know... that he is actually donating his own funds to help people make prosthetics," he said.

He was involved with charities like Reach for a Dream and the United Nations Children's Fund free of charge and at his own cost and time, Van Zyl said.

Pistorius also went into townships and helped get people to test their eyes.

He gave advice to parents who had children whose legs had to be amputated.

The court heard that in Italy Pistorius had an event for a young girl who lost both her arms and legs due to meningitis.

"He took it a step further by pushing this girl in a wheelchair for [a] five kilometre fun run."

Before the shooting, Pistorius was involved with a university in Glasgow to develop prosthetics that were more durable, cost effective and comfortable.

Read more on:    reeva steenkamp  |  oscar pistorius  |  pretoria  |  pistorius trial

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