Calm outside Madiba hospital

2013-07-19 11:34

Calm returned outside the Medi-Clinic Heart Hospital in Pretoria following birthday celebrations for former president Nelson Mandela.

Just after 9am today, a group of less than 20 people were singing, dancing and taking pictures next to the section of the hospital’s boundary wall, which had been filled with well-wishes for the ailing Mandela.

The group was part of the SA NGO Coalition, which was holding a general meeting in the city. President of the organisation, Jimmy Gotyana, said they could not come to the city and not pay their respects to Mandela.

“We came here to pay homage to our great grandfather and respected leader. We wish him a speedy recovery.”

He said the country still embodied and embraced everything Mandela stood for. The previous day, thousands of people gathered outside the hospital to sing and dance to mark his 95th birthday.

Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula said Mandela was responsive, opening his eyes and nodding. He was admitted to the hospital on June 8 with a recurring lung infection.

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