Pistorious: It is murder so let’s move on

More than two years after the shooting, the high profile trial, the conviction, and a term partially served, Oscar Pistorius has been found guilty of the murder of Reeva Steenkamp by the South African Supreme Court. This then overturns the previous conviction of culpable homicide and Pistorius will be expected back in court after Christmas for re-sentencing.

He could end up with the maximum sentence of 15 years for unintentional murder that South African laws offers, or have his sentence reduced on the influence of him already being one year into a 5 year term, part of which was under house arrest, a privilege normally extended to those needing special attention or those exhibiting good behavior.

However If public opinion in Uganda had its way Pistorius would probably be dragged by horses along Kampala Road, before a death by stoning at City Square. And I guess this is because many of us have just failed to free ourselves of the thought that Pistorius was just another privileged ‘white kid’ being given preferential treatment despite such a heinous crime.

Oscar was privileged yes and may have in typical fashion acted like he was beyond reproach on many occasions, but that alone isn’t enough to convict a man.

What actually must convict him should be what happened on that night.

And it should not matter that it was intentional or an accident. Pistorius in his arguments seems to say that he never knew it was his girlfriend, like that would have stopped him or that burglars deserve to die in cold-blood, as this is who he thought was behind the door.

But whether we call it culpable homicide or unintentional murder, at the end of the day someone died and in the interest of justice someone ought to be responsible for that. And like Judge Eric Leach said in delivering his ruling, “The identity of victim is irrelevant to his guilt,” and that to me means Pistorius is being held up to his actions.

In my view that draws a line. I refuse to be one of those who think that this overturn is the perfect rebuttal to what was initially lighter sentence. I just think that this has been a tricky case further complicated by racial undertones and the celebrity status of the victims. This is what made it a very hard one to judge.

But now we have some kind of closure. It is murder so let us move on with it.

For Pistorius now is the time to reflect on the corruption of center stage and to prepare to serve time in such a way that would inspire change all those who believe the hype.

I wouldn’t even bother to appeal to the highest court in the land is being suggested. That would only reopen old wounds when what is needed here is to allow Steenkamp to rest in peace and her family to continue with the business of living.

The case

Olympic athlete Oscar Pistorius has been found guilty of murder after a South African appeals court overturned an earlier manslaughter verdict. Pistorius killed his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp in February 2013 after shooting four times through a locked toilet door.He is currently under house arrest after spending one year of his original five-year sentence in jail. Pistorius will have to return to court to be re-sentenced, for murder.