Nelson Mandela's health showing 'slow but steady improvement'

Monday, August 12, 2013

Nelson Mandela in 2008.
Image: South Africa The Good News.

South African President Jacob Zuma announced yesterday that the health of former President and anti-apartheid campaigner Nelson Mandela was showing a "slow but steady improvement". The 95-year-old was admitted to hospital on June 8 with a lung infection.

Zuma's statement mirrors that of Mandela's youngest daughter Zindzi who told the state-owned television company SABC on Friday that Mandela "now manages to sit up, like now he is able to sit up in a chair for a few minutes in a day. Every day you know, he is becoming more alert, more responsive and so on."

Zindzi was confident in her father's recovery: "[He] is determined not to go anywhere anytime soon. I cannot stress this enough. People must stop saying to the family 'let go, let go'. We are just looking at this man who is saying 'I'm not going anywhere'."

According to legal documents filed by Mandela's family, he was at one stage on life support. All vehicles entering the hospital in Pretoria where Mandela is being treated are being searched by police officers. Well-wishers have left messages and flowers for Mandela.