Mandela recovering well, but visitor rush a concern

JOHANNESBURG Mon Jan 31, 2011 9:06am EST

Zindzi Mandela (C), daughter of former South African President Nelson Mandela, arrives at Milpark hospital in Johannesburg, January 28, 2011. REUTERS/Siphiwe Sibeko

Zindzi Mandela (C), daughter of former South African President Nelson Mandela, arrives at Milpark hospital in Johannesburg, January 28, 2011.

Credit: Reuters/Siphiwe Sibeko

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JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Former South African President Nelson Mandela is recovering well from a respiratory infection that led to his hospitalization last week but doctors are worried there may be too many people trying to visit him.

"President Mandela is said to be responding to medication and treatment," Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe said in a statement posted on Monday on the website of Mandela's foundation (www.nelsonmandela.org/).

"The doctors who are taking care of President Mandela remain concerned about the number of people visiting. Doctors must also be allowed to do their work without any undue pressure," it said.

Mandela, 92, was admitted to hospital last Wednesday, prompting fears for the anti-apartheid icon who led South Africa as its first black president and is revered at home and abroad as a symbol of reconciliation and hope.

He was discharged on Friday and has been receiving care at his home in an upscale Johannesburg neighborhood.

A leading civic group and others called on South Africans at the weekend to light candles to show their support for Mandela's recovery.

(Reporting by Jon Herskovitz; Editing by Giles Elgood)

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