A judge has ruled that Oscar Pistorius can leave South Africa to compete in international track meets. The judge upheld the Olympic athlete's appeal against some of his bail restrictions. The international athletics body, the IAAF, says Pistorius would be allowed to run at this year's world championships in Moscow in August if he qualifies reports MSN News.
Paralympian and sport's personality Oscar Pistorius had limits placed on his travel and behaviour following the shooting dead of his girlfriend Reeve Steenkamp. There was never any doubt that Oscar had pulled the trigger killing Reeva, however the circumstances surrounding her death were not clear.
Oscar maintained that he thought an intruder was in the bathroom of his home when he opened fire killing Reeva, who took more than one bullet. If that is a true representation of what happened there are still many unanswered questions, not least Oscar's apparent shoot first ask questions later attitude. There are many reasons given and explanations online why he may have behaved in such a way but none really justify the murder of a person, especially of Reeva. Also none excuse his behaviour nor justify a relaxation of bail conditions.
Throughout the lengthy bail hearing Oscar was afforded more courteousness and deferential treatment than other murder suspects He was not locked in jail each night but had a cell at a police station. In court he was constantly asked if he was OK. Yes, he appeared traumatised but that would be the case for any murder suspect, in these circumstances.
He was given bail and may not be tried until late in 2013. Conditions of his bail included a ban on alcohol, no guns and limited travel. Oscar's legal team have contested the bail arrangements and they will now to be eased.
According to MSN news, "Oscar Pistorius can leave South Africa to compete in international track meets, a judge has ruled as he upheld the Olympic athlete's appeal against some of his bail restrictions. And the international athletics body the IAAF says Pistorius would be allowed to run at this year's world championships in Moscow in August if he qualifies.
IAAF spokesman Yannis Nikolau says there would be no objection from the world body to Pistorius competing at the worlds, saying "on the basis of the 'innocent until proven guilty' principle he would be free to run." Mr Nikolau says the decision on whether Pistorius could run at other events would be at the "discretion of meeting organisers" and not the IAAF".
Pistorius has not competed since September and his agent stressed he may not want to race again. You have to assume there was some reason for requesting an easing of bail restrictions though and competing could be the reason.
Judge Bert Bam, in a North Gauteng High Court said that "Oscar's passport will be held by a court while he is in South Africa, and he can only leave the country if he provides an itinerary of his travel plans at least a week before he is due to leave. Pistorius must also hand his travel documents back to the court within 24 hours of returning home".
Does it sound fair to you? The only way to assess that is whether or not the easing of bail conditions is normal. Is it usual for a man accused of murder to be allowed to travel abroad? The excuse that Oscar is so well known that he could not skip bail is ludicrous. As the circumstances surrounding the shooting of Reeva are contested there is no way any person can say 100% that Pistorius would not kill again. He could even harm himself.
When a celebrity commits a crime they always look for a quick way out. The legal system can be slow and justice takes time. Ordinary citizens are left to go with the flow, so why not Oscar? Preferential treatment sends out the wrong message and is disrespectful to Reeva and her family.