Nelson Mandela: Security stepped up at hospital

2011-01-26 18:12

Johannesburg - Former president Nelson Mandela was at Milpark hospital in Johannesburg on Wednesday afternoon undergoing routine tests, the Nelson Mandela Foundation said.

An AFP photographer saw Mandela's wife, Graça Machel, leaving the hospital at about 17:30, with four other family members departing shortly after. His personal assistant Zelda la Grange arrived at 18:00.

The hospital declined to comment on whether Mandela would be staying in hospital overnight, saying it does not give information on patients as a matter of policy. news has reported that Mandela is not in ICU and there is nothing to indicate that he is in any danger.

"He is in no danger and is in good spirits," the foundation said in a statement in Johannesburg.

An journalist said a military ambulance brought Mandela to the hospital. Family members were seen laughing and joking around and did not look distressed.

Activity at the hospital continued as usual on Wednesday afternoon.

Visitors met patients in the hospital's reception area, unaware of the presence of the former president in the same building.

Journalists from various media houses arrived one by one at the facility greeting each other and standing in groups talking.

A security guard approached one group asking what their business at the hospital was, prompting the journalists to quickly disperse.

At a far corner of the hospital, a makeshift barrier of green mesh was erected. Inside the area were VIP cars, presumably belonging to family members.

Mandela frail

Security guards continued to query journalists waiting idly outside the facility, without giving a reason for their enquiries.

Reporters, for their part, were silent on why they were at the hospital - for fear of being removed from the premises.

Archbishop Desmond Tutu on Tuesday told Sapa that Mandela was "frail".

"I saw him last week," Tutu said in Cape Town.

"He was all right, I mean he's 92, man, you know. And he's frail."

Earlier this month, a report circulated on social network Twitter that the elder statesman had died.

It was condemned as malicious and insensitive by the African National Congress.

Afrikaans Sunday newspaper Rapport said though the rumours were false, reliable sources had confirmed that Mandela's health had deteriorated.

In mid-January, a Nelson Mandela Foundation spokesperson said Mandela was well and on holiday with his wife Graça Machel.

Mandela has not appeared publicly since the closing ceremony of the 2010 FIFA World Cup in Johannesburg.

  • Christo - 2011-01-26 18:18

    Wish people would leave him alone and not circle around him expecting him to die... Long live Nelson Mandela!

      jeff - 2011-01-26 18:21

      Hear Hear

      Paul Jones - 2013-06-13 23:04

      My last pay check was $9500 working 12 hours a week online. My sisters friend has been averaging 15k for months now and she works about 20 hours a week. I can't believe how easy it was once I tried it out. This is what I do,

  • Pete OJ - 2011-01-26 18:27

    I just hope the ANC is not going to try and parade him again just prior to the elections like they did last time. They are callous enough to hope that he will live long enough to ensure loyalty votes by people who love Madiba. God Bless Madiba! Thanks for your effort.

      semaj - 2011-01-26 19:41

      Frail hope Pete, callous is not the word, but perhaps, just perhaps, the ANC will try to capitalise on the more criminal (yet innocent? because not proven in a court of law, yet!)personalities in the party

  • April - 2011-01-26 19:04

    I pray all tests go well. All this unwanted negative attention can't be good for him. Strange how some humans turn into vultures at the slightest hint of weakness!

      SEMATSATSA - 2011-01-26 19:36

      The negative comment is not in South Africa if you can take a closer look.I believe it is just in front of your screen and certainly it doesn't equal a drop in a cup.

      maddy - 2011-01-26 19:46

      @SEMATSATSA. don't get what you are saying. April is obviously referring to the journalists hanging around the hospital. Nowhere has April made any negative insinuation.

      Mundu - 2011-01-26 20:02

      Ignore SEMATSATSA he/she is just another flunky with a plank size chip on his/her shoulders.

      SEMATSATSA - 2011-01-26 20:10

      @maddy,If you have been following the story since it was released by Beeld,you will know where I'm coming from up to the Milpark saga.Anyway why should I parade my father to show the outsiders the owner of the house? DO YOU GET ME NOW? ARE YOU SURE?

      maddy - 2011-01-26 20:23

      @samatsa. poor samatsa. read April's negative attention and your negative comment. Get it.

  • Jonathan - 2011-01-26 19:07

    He is a great man ....get better soon madiba

  • Rachel - 2011-01-26 19:14

    Thinking of you, Madiba. Get well soon.

  • coolwaynie - 2011-01-26 19:19

    Why are there vultures flying over the hospital?

  • Lindy - 2011-01-26 19:31

    People are so insensitive! Suddenly they know when or how he will die. Leave the guy alone. NX!

  • Sallie - 2011-01-26 19:43

    And with what is the ANC left now? Mbeki, Zuma, Juilis, Shabir Shaik, Ngeni, etc. etc. etc. The time is few! Sorry for a great leader to trust his followers with a bunch of (you can fill the space yourself).

  • Karoobloed - 2011-01-26 19:44

    Heartening to see that the racists have not yet started offering us their putrid onliners belittling the Father of the free RSA. History will hold the leadership before and after him accountable for their abject failures. Mr. Mandela certainly did not wish to see the free RSA awash in crime and corruption. An individual holding up Mr. Mandela to ridicule, is like a drop of water belittling the ocean... This Afrikaner boy wish you a dignified final journey when it comes - like the dignified initial journey you offered as when you were released from 27 years in prison.

      Karen - 2011-01-26 20:13

      100% met jou!

      PistolPete - 2011-01-26 20:13

      Hear hear

      Michelle - 2011-01-26 20:58

      stem saam

      Neo - 2011-01-27 09:22

      Stem 100% saam.

  • SEMATSATSA - 2011-01-26 19:46

    Madiba is a blind man,he doesn't see colour on anyone,which most of us are struggling when it comes to that.He learned to master that uniqueness if not born with it. He must be special,isn't he? long live Mandela,you are a gift to our country.Some of us cannot cope with your existence because you are someone else never to be seen again on this earth, by those who are living now.Ibuyile iAfrica.

  • Viparo - 2011-01-26 19:47

    Shame man. He's an old man, and he will die some day, like all of us. Leave the guy alone.

  • Hungwe - 2011-01-26 19:56

    One of Africa's only true Statesmen, will people please respect his family and him.

  • Patience - 2011-01-26 20:07

    May God bless and keep him. He should be left in peace but I doubt it very much. For a couple of years now news agencies around the world have got contingency plans in place for this event. There will unfortunately be an enormous media frenzy when he departs to the next level. SA just won't be the same without him.

      Karen - 2011-01-26 20:14

      His legacy and all that he taught us will live forever ...

  • Vusi - 2011-01-26 20:39

    all those who wish Madiba to die, let them to be the ones to die first.

      Eugene - 2011-01-26 21:05

      May no one wish him to die - but if he is called by God to go home, we must keep his spirit and beleifs, values and morals alive for this country and continent and the world - for which he got the Nobel Peace prize. Let us all treasure that and respect his family in these times!

  • Perfume - 2011-01-26 21:31

    Let the Will of God prevail, only God knows when Mr.Mandela's time is up on this earth....strength to him and his family

  • mojalefa.mogakane - 2011-01-26 21:32

    The madiba in the making after the real madiba who's currently on his routine test is's all in the power of the ANC.Lol smudge your shit now.

  • leagilwem - 2011-01-26 22:39

    Will the media exercise a bit of sensitivity for a change! May God bless you Madiba. Long live!

  • Emile - 2011-01-26 23:07

    A part of me is gonna fall to the ground in tears if something happens to him, another part is going to marvel at what he has done for the world and South Africa, and another part is going to hope he gets the well-deserved rest he needs after living a life 20 people combined could only imagine. Nelson Mandela: You are a icon. A leader. A saint.

      Perfume - 2011-01-26 23:24

      I think South Africans are praying that he has many more years with us I commented earlier "only the Will of God can prevail" :)

  • Emile - 2011-01-26 23:10

    A part of me is gonna fall to the ground in tears if something happens to him, another part is going to marvel at what he has done for the world and South Africa, and another part is going to hope he gets the well-deserved rest he needs after living a life 20 people combined could only imagine. Nelson Mandela: You are a icon. A leader. A saint.

  • Gerda - 2011-01-27 00:23

    Mandela is a world icon and of course the media would be interested to report happenings to the world. Would be easier if a hospital representative would hold an news conference to update everyone instead of everyone guessing.

  • larrikin - 2011-01-27 08:40

    he is immortal, when it is his time he will just vanish to the unknown world, long live TATA long live

  • amanda.g - 2011-01-27 08:49

    He is a human being whose privacy should be respected, let him be, he changed the world and will always be an ICON....

  • mercutio9 - 2011-01-27 10:47

    I sincerely hope the government has an action plan in the eventuality of Mr Mandela's death (long live Comrade Mandela), as he is old and we have to be grownup about this and face facts. The people's grief has to be channeled. In every town and city there has to be church, african traditional as well as non-religious services for a nationwide vigil. It is vital that people have a structured, planned outlet for their emotions. Lady Diana's was handled well by the British in which people queued to write message of condolence which kept them busy. It is better to have a plan ready in every city, and for every township in order to better channel the swell of emotion which will inevitably happen.

  • annelynnm - 2011-01-27 10:52

    Our prayers are with you Madiba. Get well soon. Annelynn

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