Nelson Mandela 'doing fine'

2012-02-27 13:38

Johannesburg - Former president Nelson Mandela is at home and is fine, the presidency said on Monday.

"We have no other update on him except for what we said yesterday [Sunday]," spokesperson Harold Maloka said.

Asked whether Madiba was receiving visitors at home or if he was up and talking, Maloka said: "We are not giving that kind of update."

Mandela was discharged on Sunday after spending a night in hospital.

President Jacob Zuma said he was making good progress and had a good night's rest.

"The doctors have assured us that there is nothing to worry about and that Madiba is in good health," he said.

"He is surrounded by his family and is relaxed and comfortable. The doctors are happy with the progress he is making."

He said the 93-year-old Nobel Peace prize winner had undergone a diagnostic procedure on Saturday to determine the cause of his longstanding abdominal complaint.

Coverage

AFP reported that Mandela's latest hospitalisation forced the nation to contemplate the day when he will no longer be here.

"Whenever it comes, it will come as a shock. There will be a lot of public mourning because of the influence he had over the last 70 years in South Africa and over the life of most South Africans," Frans Cronje of the South African Institute of Race Relations told AFP.

"It is precisely because we know that Mandela is frail, that he will not be with us forever, that we hold our collective breath each time he goes to hospital amid rumours of ill health," said an editorial in The Times.

"He remains the father of our new, post-apartheid nation and his presence - however much he no longer occupies a visible, public space - offers us comfort. To imagine a South Africa without him is, for many, an unthinkable sorrow."

"Madiba is no ordinary man but despite his innumerable achievements he is human, not deserving to be treated like a spectacle. So, it is about time he was given a breather to recuperate in peace," said the Sowetan's editorial.

Columnist Robyn Curnow, who is also a South Africa correspondent for CNN, summed up why the nation, now 18 years into post-apartheid democracy, holds its breath each time it is forced to contemplate a Mandela-less future.

"Nelson Mandela is held in deep affection because he reminds South Africans of how far they have come," she wrote in The Times. "Mandela rekindles South Africans' nostalgia for a time when this country was a miracle of democracy."

Read more on:    nelson mandela  |  johannesburg
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