Jacob Zuma briefed by Mandela medical team

2013-06-11 15:10

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Ailing former president Nelson Mandela is still in a serious but stable condition, the presidency has said.

“President Jacob Zuma last night met with the medical team that is treating former President Nelson Mandela, and they gave him a thorough briefing,” the presidency said in a statement today.

“The former President is still in a serious, but stable condition in a Pretoria hospital.”

According to the statement, Zuma “has full confidence in the medical team, and is satisfied that they are doing their best to make Madiba better”.

It said media reports that Zuma is to visit the hospital today to see Madiba are incorrect.

“The president is in Cape Town preparing for the budget vote of the presidency.”

Meanwhile, two of Mandela’s daughters arrived at the Medi-Clinic Heart Hospital in Pretoria earlier today.

Makaziwe Mandela’s red Range Rover drove past numerous police officers deployed at the hospital’s entrance.

Her car was followed by that of Zenani Mandela, the South African ambassador to Argentina. Unlike other cars entering the hospital, their vehicles were not searched.

Police were stationed outside the hospital, in the Pretoria suburb of Arcadia. Security at the facility had been tightened, with police officers manning the two entrances.

Police spokesperson Brigadier Phuti Setati earlier said police stationed at the hospital were part of the presidential protection services team, whose task includes protecting former presidents.

He did not specifically confirm that Mandela was in the hospital.

Mandela was admitted to a Pretoria hospital in the early hours of Saturday morning in a “serious but stable” condition, the presidency said.

The number of news crews camping outside the hospital continued to swell today.

By 11am, there were 13 outside broadcast vehicles along the street near the hospital’s main entrance. Hundreds of media personnel, including logistical and technical staff, milled outside the main entrance.

Some of the media crews had generators and erected tents at the second entrance, adjacent to a busy street leading to the Pretoria CBD.

Local and international journalists were also camped outside Mandela’s Houghton, northern Joburg, home. Some members of the public took photos of each other outside the house.

Earlier this morning, a group of school children from the Rainbow Hill Christian School in Orange Grove arrived at the house and sang “Get well Tata Mandela, get well”.

After they finished, one boy stepped out of the group and read from a card, thanking Mandela for what he had done for South Africa, wishing him the best, and saying he was loved.

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