OSCAR Pistorius – once a global superstar, but now a murder convict –
will almost certainly swap luxury for a one-man prison cell when a
Pretoria court sentences him for murdering his girlfriend in 2013.
The warden promises that his treatment will be fair, but humane. Pistorius will spend his final days of house arrest in a luxurious mansion in an upmarket suburb of Pretoria, barely five minutes drive from the cell where he will likely live in the next few years .
The Kgosi Mampuru II prison in central Pretoria houses some of SouthAfrica’s most brutal rapists, murderers and apartheid-era assassins.
According to prison officials, the athlete, who was once a global
superstar, will kept safe during his incarceration.
“We don’t have a problem inside the facility and Mr Pistorius has
conducted himself well,” said Mandla Mkhabela, the acting
commissioner of prisons in the Gauteng province. “He will be safe.”
Pistorius, who served a year of his five-year sentence for culpable
homicide in the hospital wing at Kgosi Mampuru II, received “no
special treatment” before he was released on house arrest in October.
He will, however, almost certainly have to return to the prison when
he receives a fresh sentence for a murder conviction that was imposed
on him in a reversal by South Africa’s Supreme Court of Appeals on
According to South African law, the minimum sentence for murder is 15
“Mr Pistorius is the first double amputee to be held at Kgosi Mampuru
as far as I know,” Mkhabela said during a media tour of the prison
earlier this week.
“Like all other prisoners, we make sure is treated in a humane way,
but he has received no special treatment.”
For breakfast, Pistorius can look forward to porridge, eggs or white
bread, Mkhabela said.
Cell 2 in the hospital wing of the prison, where Pistorius was
held, contains a neatly made single steel bed with a thin mattress
and a steel basin.
A soft light beams into the cell from a bar-enclosed window above the
bed. The window looks out over the prison courtyard.
It takes less than two steps to move from one side of the cell to the
Pistorius’ bath has been adapted with hand railings to help him get in and out.
Pistorius will be allowed to exercise in the prison courtyard and
given privileges for good behaviour.
He can also join other prisoners in skills programmes like mechanics,carpentry and metal work.
A number of prisoners, dressed in orange jumpsuits and speaking on condition of anonymity, said they had been uplifted by the skills
One prisoner said he had attended anger management classes at the jail, similar to the ones Pistorius had to attend.
“You have to know how to communicate with a person if they are angry with you or you are angry with them,” the prisoner said. “Anger doesn’t solve problems. You have to know how to manage it.” – ANA