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By Marizka Coetzer

Journalist


Releasing Pistorius during 16 Days of Activism would be a slap in the face of women

Victimologist says Pistorius has become the poster boy for gender-based violence (GBV) and was a high-profile offender.


It would be a slap in the face of women if Oscar Pistorius was released during 16 Days of Activism for No Violence Against Women and Children, victimologist Prof Jaco Barkhuizen said. The Correctional Supervision and Parole Board (CSPB) announced earlier Pistorius’ parole applications would be considered on Friday, a day ahead of launch of the annual 16 Days of Activism for No Violence Against Women and Children. Barkhuizen said Pistorius has become the poster boy for gender-based violence (GBV) and was a high-profile offender. “Should Pistorius be released on parole during this time, the parole board and the justice…

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It would be a slap in the face of women if Oscar Pistorius was released during 16 Days of Activism for No Violence Against Women and Children, victimologist Prof Jaco Barkhuizen said.

The Correctional Supervision and Parole Board (CSPB) announced earlier Pistorius’ parole applications would be considered on Friday, a day ahead of launch of the annual 16 Days of Activism for No Violence Against Women and Children.

Barkhuizen said Pistorius has become the poster boy for gender-based violence (GBV) and was a high-profile offender.

“Should Pistorius be released on parole during this time, the parole board and the justice system are just doing lip service when it comes to GBV.

“Potentially releasing someone who murdered his partner during this time shows a disconnect between what was being said versus what was being done.

ALSO READ: Oscar Pistorius’ parole hearing to be heard on Friday

“It would insult what the 16 days of activism stands for because he killed his partner.” Barkhuizen said everyone was entitled to a parole hearing but not everyone deserved parole.

“The problem with the parole system is the board is just currently check-listing whatever. That’s why they release serial killers back into society.”

Barkhuizen said the South African parole system was not fully functional or logical and added that the board can, out of respect, wait until after the 16 days of activism before releasing him.

In March, Pistorius’ first parole request was rejected after the department of correctional services said he had not completed the minimum detention period required to be let out.

There was initially a dispute about Pistorius’ time served, after he had been thought to have served more than half, having started his term in 2014, but was resentenced in July 2016 to 13 years and five months’ imprisonment.

ALSO READ: Could Oscar Pistorius be out of prison before Christmas?

Department of correction services spokesperson Singabakho Nxumalo confirmed the parole board for Kgosi Mampuru II Management Area will be considering Pistorius for parole on Friday.

“The CSPB shall conduct its business as per the procedure manual and decide whether the inmate is suitable for social reintegration. It is upon them to work out the placement date, should an inmate be declared ready to be placed on parole.”

Nxumalo said the department was unable to predict any possible outcome in terms of the processes.

“It is critical to highlight that parole boards are independent structures and ought to be allowed to render their services without any due interference or influence,” he said.

A friend of the Pistorius family said the family was ready to support him should he be released.

ALSO READ: Oscar Pistorius has been eligible for parole since March

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