Pistorius favouritism concerns brushed-off

South African Paralympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius appears in the Pretoria Magistrate Court on 20 February 2013. Picture: AFP
PRETORIA - The Department of Correctional Services has downplayed concerns that its probation officers visiting murder accused Oscar Pistorius at home is preferential treatment.

The visits are part of conditions imposed on the athlete when he was released on bail of R1 million on Friday.

The police arrested the athlete at his Pretoria East home after he allegedly murdered his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.

Correctional Services deputy chief commissioner James Smalberger said there were about 1, 700 accused being visited by the department's probation officers.

“There are many others who are under the same conditions and as far as that, there is no uniqueness in terms of Correctional Services’ involvement in this specific case.”

He said the officers would visit Pistorius at his uncle's Waterkloof home at least four times a month.

Smalberger said Pistorius met with officials yesterday, to discuss the arrangements.

It also emerged yesterday that the athlete is not required to report to a police station twice a week as previously reported.