Mandela close to medical care in Houghton

2012-12-27 16:05
Nelson Mandela (Picture: AFP)

Nelson Mandela (Picture: AFP)

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Johannesburg - The doctors treating former president Nelson Mandela believe he should remain in Johannesburg for now to be close to medical facilities that can provide care to the 94-year-old, the government said on Thursday.

Mandela left a hospital on Wednesday evening after nearly three weeks of treatment, and was taken to his Houghton home.

Madiba has spent more time in recent years in his home village Qunu in the Eastern Cape.

Mandela's grandson, Mandla Mandela, said he hopes "it won't be too long before he's with us back in Qunu, where he belongs," but acknowledged that the doctors' assessment is critical to any decision to travel.

"It can be a strenuous trip," the grandson said in an interview with eNCA.

"We will await the feedback from the doctors as to when he will be fit and ready to come back home."

Mandela was admitted on 8 December to a Pretoria hospital. The former president was treated for a lung infection and also had a procedure to remove gallstones.

"Where Madiba goes, in which period, in which times, is a matter that is entirely dependent on his own wishes. Whatever he wishes, we will do," presidential spokesperson Mac Maharaj told eNCA.

"But right now, the doctors have considered it necessary and good that he should be in Houghton so that he's close to all the facilities where we can give him high care," Maharaj said.

Maharaj noted that Mandela had been in good spirits while receiving President Jacob Zuma and other visitors while he was hospitalised.

"Madiba was doing well, but as you know, when you're recovering there are ups and downs, slight ups and downs, and the doctors are looking for a steady progress and that began to be registered over the last few days," the spokesperson said.

Maharaj said Mandela is able to see his family "more easily" now that he is at home, but he appealed to the public to respect the former president's privacy "to allow the best possible conditions for his full recovery".

- AP
Read more on:    nelson mandela  |  mac maharaj  |  mandla mandela  |  jacob zuma  |  johannesburg
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