Oscar's family also in the dark

2015-09-18 13:21
The scene outside Oscar Pistorius's uncle's house in Pretoria. (Genevieve Quintal, News24)

The scene outside Oscar Pistorius's uncle's house in Pretoria. (Genevieve Quintal, News24)

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Pretoria - Life seemed to be going on as usual on Friday in the quiet upmarket Pretoria suburb where Oscar Pistorius's uncle lives, even though an announcement by the Parole Review Board was expected on the former Paralympian's possible release under correctional supervision.

Family spokesperson Anneliese Burgess told News24 they have also been left in the dark.

Rumours were that the Parole Review Board hearing had not started by 11:00 and that the board was hearing no fewer than eight matters.

Two television cameras were set up across the road from the house in case Pistorius was released from prison.

At Kgosi Mampuru II prison in Pretoria journalists were sitting around, waiting for news. Camera crews, which had been there since early morning, had positioned themselves a few metres from the main entrance.

Earlier a Correctional Services official told News24 they had not been briefed to take any special measures if Pistorius was released.

Assault rumour

On social networking site Twitter, users were talking about Pistorius being the victim of an assault in prison, but Correctional Services spokesperson Manelisi Wolela quickly stopped the rumour, saying in a WhatsApp message to eNCA journalist Karyn Maughan: "The allegations are incorrect, according to our local management that even spoke to the supposedly affected person."

In a brief statement to the media, Wolela said this week: "The Parole Review Board is an independent structure from the Department of Correctional Services and its chairperson will determine if and when the announcement of their session's results will be announced."

Pistorius was jailed last year after being found guilty of gunning down his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp at his Pretoria home on Valentine's Day in 2013. He has spent just over 10 months in jail.

He was initially expected to be released on August 21 to serve out the rest of his sentence under house arrest.

But two days before that, Justice Minister Michael Masutha announced Pistorius would not be released, saying the parole board had acted prematurely when it decided in June that he could be released in August.

Masutha said the board should have made the decision only on August 21, when Pistorius would have served one-sixth of his five-year jail term.

(Genevieve Quintal, News24)

Read more on:    oscar pistorius  |  pretoria  |  pistorius trial

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