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Pistorius remains our hero – supporters

Several supporters of murder-accused Oscar Pistorius gathered outside the High Court in Pretoria on Tuesday morning ahead of his appearance.

One of the paralympian’s fervent supporters, Kayla Nolan, 18, said she had hugged Pistorius on Monday, and was looking forward to doing it again.

“I hugged him here (at the court entrance). It was amazing. Getting to meet the man was amazing. I was also in court for some time yesterday,” said Nolan.

“I hope he will be strong enough to handle this trial. His family and our prayers are there for him. His true supporters will continue to be there for him, no matter the outcome.”

Nolan’s mother was also at court, supporting Pistorius.

Schoolgirl Ruth Chivhaku said it has become a ritual for her to pass near the court entrance to show support.

“I will forever support him. He is a great man. I know he will survive all this,” she said.

Another supporter, Marika Minie, 25, said whatever the court verdict, she will remain a Pistorius supporter.

“I don’t think he is guilty, I believe in his innocence. I don’t like all the negative comments about him,” said Minie.

“We should not judge him. God will also judge us.”

Numerous local and international journalists were lining the court entrance. Several police officers were also at the scene.

In court, the defence called a new witness Michael Nhlengetwa on Tuesday.

Nhlengetwa is a neighbour of Pistorius in the plush Silver Woods Estate in Pretoria.

He told the court that he and Pistorius share a love of cars and Pistorius would usually show him his new vehicles.

The self-employed businessman said he met Reeva Steenkamp only once. He said Pistorius introduced him to Steenkamp as “my fiancée”.

The defence is attempting to prove its case that Pistorius thought Steenkamp was an intruder when he shot and killed her in his home on February 14 last year.

He has been charged with murder as the State tries to prove its theory he shot her during an argument.

Pistorius shot four times through the locked door of his toilet, apparently thinking an intruder was about to emerge and attack him.

Steenkamp, who was behind the door, was hit in the hip, arm, and head.

The trial began on March 3.

Pistorius is also charged with three alleged contraventions of the Firearms Control Act — one of illegal possession of ammunition, and two of discharging a firearm in public.

He has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

– Sapa

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