Murder accused Oscar Pistorius. File photo: Reuters

Johannesburg - Paralympian Oscar Pistorius is opposed to abuse, Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula said on Tuesday.

“We live in a world where we seek to build role models who can be exemplary to our society and youth,” he said in a statement.

“For that, Oscar has been our torch-bearer and an international icon who stood against human rights abuses.”

He said he had been shocked to learn that the “Blade Runner” was facing murder charges after the fatal shooting of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.

She was killed at Pistorius' home in Pretoria on Thursday and a private funeral ceremony was held in her hometown of Port Elizabeth earlier on Tuesday.

Mbalula condemned acts of violence against women and children.

“None of the country's sports heroes and heroines should be associated with acts of violence,” he said.

Mbalula said there were still many questions, but the law would take its course.

“We will only get answers when our capable criminal justice system concludes its work. The process is now entirely in (its) hands... We strongly believe that no one is above the law.”

Pistorius brought an application for bail in the Pretoria Magistrate's Court on Tuesday.

The State said it would try and make a case of premeditated murder against him.

Pistorius has claimed that he mistook Steenkamp for an intruder.

The application continues on Wednesday. - Sapa