Hours after Judge Thokizile Masipa sentenced Oscar Pistorius to five-years in jail for killing his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp and a further three years — suspended for five years — for discharging a firearm in public, the disgraced paralympian headed to the Kgosi Mampuru II prison, formerly known as the Pretoria Central Prison.
Within six hours of being admitted, he would undergo a health assessment at the prison hospital section. After this, he would be told which section he would serve his sentence in.
The prison houses 7 000 offenders, but it is unlikely that Pistorius would be placed in the general population. It is believed that he would be housed in one of the prison’s 22 single cells — seven of which are currently occupied.
Each cell has a toilet, a basin, a cupboard and a bed with basic linen. During sentencing, it was indicated that should Oscar need a shower with a bench or rails, it would not be unreasonable that these could be installed for him.
According to the Department of Corrections, the prison also offers a range of programs to help inmates deal with anger management, substance abuse, and life in prison.
Should Pistorius choose to keep himself busy, he can chose from skill development courses such as spray painting and welding. He could also earn a little money working in the textile or furniture workshops, or gardening.
The prison also has two gyms where Oscar can work out and maintain his fitness if he has hopes of returning to athletics when he is released.
The paralympian would also be allowed two visitors per week over the weekend or on public holidays, who could stay for a maximum of 60 minutes depending on which section he is assigned to.
Pistorius was stoic throughout the sentencing, showing very little emotion. It is believed that his lawyers and psychologist would have prepared him for the eventuality of serving time in prison.
Outside the court, Pistorius’ uncle, Arnold Pistorius, told reporters that as a family, they have accepted the judgement and the sentence. “As a family, we will guide Oscar as he begins serving his sentence.”
He also appealed to the media for privacy. “After 20 months of a relentless trial, please allow us to move further in this grieving process and give us some degree of privacy and dignity as we do so.”
Meanwhile, the ANC Women’s League (ANCWL) said the sentence signalled a sad day for women in South Africa.
“We are saddened by the judgment . . . we have never been happy with the conviction of culpable homicide, instead of murder,” ANCWL Spokeswoman Jacqui Mofokeng said outside the court. “We call for the national prosecutions to appeal this sentence . . . and do it for our society.”
Additional reporting by Sapa