Friday, 4 December 2015

Pistorius Murder Verdict Gives Respect To Reeva... Says Her Mother.

June Steenkamp has forgiven the athlete, she tells TV interviewer following supreme court of appeal’s ruling.

Reeva Steenkamp’s mother June has called the murder verdict handed to Oscar Pistorius a sign of respect for her daughter and said she forgives him.

In her first comments since the appeal court ruling on Thursday, she said: “Now we’ve seen that the justice system works. It’s about respect for my daughter, how wonderful she was, how clever she was, all that was taken away from her.”.
Pistorius Murder Verdict Gives Respect To Reeva... Says Her Mother.
Pistorius shot and killed girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day in 2013. Originally convicted of culpable homicide, the South African equivalent of manslaughter, the supreme court of appeal said the Paralympian was guilty of murder.

June Steenkamp was present as the court handed down its decision, as she has been throughout the long legal process. After the verdict, she was seen sobbing on the steps of the court house.

She was calm and composed in the interview with the state broadcaster SABC. “I see this as the truth. And the success is due to the justice system and God,” she said. “This is respect for my daughter and her life also, and respect for women all over this country, because we have too much of this happening and people get away with it.

“Life was taken. And the person who took the life must pay the price now. If you do the crime, you have to do the time. I’m not really interested in how much time, but I’m happy with the verdict. I feel better we have justice for her. She hasn’t been forgotten. She won’t be forgotten.”

Steenkamp said she had forgiven Pistorius. “I don’t want to hurt him in any way … To move on in life, you have to forgive. I have forgiven him, and I don’t wish him any harm. He just has to pay for what he’s done, and take responsibility for what he’s done.”

She said the case had destroyed her family. “A big part of their life has been taken away. They were all close to Reeva,” she said. “Oscar is actually still alive but his family have suffered also. You have to think of that. Two families totally destroyed because of what happened. But at least we have the truth now and the right decision and the right judgment.”

Steenkamp praised South Africa’s justice system, and said she did not care how long Pistorius spent behind bars. “It doesn’t make a difference to me if it’s five years or six years. It’s not going to change my life because my daughter is never coming back. You have to let go of that now. I’ll just carry on with my work, and if I can save one more woman I’ll be happy.”

Steenkamp said the stress had been too much for Barry Steenkamp, her husband and Reeva’s father. “He had a stroke, it’s been too much for him,” she told the interviewer. “I didn’t want him to travel, because he wasn’t well. I was afraid if he went to court he would take the strain and the stress, and I didn’t know how he would react to being so close to Oscar in the court. I wanted to keep him away from that.”