Convicted murderer Oscar Pistorius and the father of Reeva Steenkamp – the woman he was convicted of killing – met for a victim-offender dialogue (VOD) last month.
The Steenkamp family’s attorney, Tania Koen, said the dialogue occurred on 22 June between Reeva’s father, Barry, and Pistorius.
Pistorius was transferred to a prison in Gqeberha in the Eastern Cape – the Steenkamps’ hometown – for the dialogue.
“We have no further comment. The dialogue is a private and confidential matter, hence we ask that our clients’ privacy be respected,” said Koen.
Pistorius shot Reeva, his girlfriend, several times on 14 February 2013.
The correctional services department said on Friday that Pistorius was taken back to the Atteridgeville correctional facility after the VOD.
“There is a need to emphasise that inmates are required to partake in the VOD as part of their rehabilitation path, wherein they are able to acknowledge the harm they have caused to their victims and the society at large,” department spokesperson Singabakho Nxumalo said.
According to the department, “participating in the VOD does not equate to an end of sentence, nor parole placement”.
News24 reported that Pistorius’ parole process started after the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) amended its ruling on his sentence for a second time last year, antedating the 13 years and five-month jail term it had imposed on him to 21 October 2014, the day he was first sentenced for culpable homicide by Judge Thokozile Masipa.
The SCA previously amended the sentence, after it emerged the judgment failed to take into account the 506 days Pistorius had already served for Steenkamp’s murder.
As a result, Pistorius’ lawyers contended that the 35-year-old was eligible for parole in February last year – when he had completed half of his sentence.
“The relief that we would be seeking would be that a parole hearing be constituted to consider [Pistorius’] placement on parole,” his lawyer, Julian Knight, said at the time.