Mandela spends fifth day in hospital

2013-04-01 14:38
(Picture: AP)

(Picture: AP)

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Johannesburg - Former president Nelson Mandela spent his fifth day in hospital on Monday receiving treatment for a recurring lung infection.

Presidential spokesperson Mac Maharaj said an update from Sunday night which said Mandela had a restful day and was comfortable still stood.

This weekend, Maharaj said Mandela had the water on his lungs drained, helping him breathe after his chest problems had flared up again.

Mandela was admitted to an undisclosed hospital just before midnight last Wednesday.

Over the last few months, Mandela has been in hospital a few times. His lengthiest stay was in December when he spent 18 days in a Pretoria hospital to undergo an operation to remove gallstones and receive treatment for his lung infection.

South Africa's first black president has a long history of lung problems, dating back to the time when he contracted tuberculosis while a political prisoner on Robben Island during apartheid.

Meanwhile on Sunday, well wishers left messages of support on stones surrounding plants outside Mandela's Johannesburg home.

"Get well we love you" and "I wish you many more b-days to come" could be read and seen on the stones, written on with typex or permanent marker.

Pictures of Mandela, and a few of actor Morgan Freeman who played the elderly statesman in Invictus, continued to trend highly on Twitter.

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