Oscar Pistorius Trial Postponed to the 7th of April

By Oliver Ngwenya    28-Mar-2014 21:30 UTC+02:00
Image: Times Live

Image: Times Live

The most disappointing part of the Oscar Pistorius Trial was not only that it was postponed to the 7th of April but more that it was Oscar himself who was due to take the stand in his own defence. The high profile case of the world renowned athlete was postponed on Friday after a two day break by Judge Thokozile Masipa because the court was ‘not properly constituted’ as one of her two assessors was ill.

Judge Masipa decided to postpone the case to the 7th of April since one of her assessors, Janet Henzen-Du Toit was ill and as a result, she felt that the court would not be properly constituted. Henzen-Du Toit is one of the two assessors who is helping the judge in coming up with the best verdict in this case. The other assessor is Themba Mazibuko. While the two have a role in helping the judge in coming up with viable and fair decisions, they are usually camera shy and have not made any public statements. The sixty six year old judge has been seen to consult them several times during the course of the trial.

Oscar Pistorius is standing accused of the premeditated killing of his model girlfriend by shooting her while she was in the toilet after they had had an argument. He argues, in his turn, that he killed her by error after he heard a noise in the bathroom and thought that an intruder was there. The prosecution, led by Advocate Gerrie Nel, has produced several witnesses that include his friends, former girlfriend, ballistic experts and several other professionals. Barry Roux, for the defence, on the other hand, has sought to discredit these witnesses and create doubts about the evidence they gave.

The postponement of the trial has hit several sectors in different ways. It appears that the two counsels welcomed the decision without protest. Logic would point to the fact that it gives them time to strengthen their cases and also to simply give them a break form the hustle and bustle of court life. As for Oscar, the postponement could mean one of two things for him. It means that he will be out of the hot seat a while longer. On the other hand, it could mean putting off the inevitable. Whatever happens, he will have to take the stand to tell the world what really happened on that fatal Valentines day. According to legal experts, if he does not take the stand to defend himself, he will, most likely be convicted of murder. Oscar is one of two people who know what really happened on that morning. The other person is dead and cannot tell their tale.

The other affected party to the postponement of the case are the crews of the different media houses. Due to the nature of these cases, some publications had flown reporters over in order to ensure that they are up to date with the news. The postponement means that these reporters will have to stay obviously at great expense to the news companies.

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