Former South Africa president Mandela admitted to the hospital

JOHANNESBURG Sat Dec 8, 2012 12:03pm EST

Former South African president Nelson Mandela looks on as he celebrates his birthday at his house in Qunu, Eastern Cape July 18, 2012. REUTERS/Siphiwe Sibeko

Former South African president Nelson Mandela looks on as he celebrates his birthday at his house in Qunu, Eastern Cape July 18, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Siphiwe Sibeko

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Former South African president Nelson Mandela was admitted to hospital on Saturday for medical tests, although the government said there was no cause for alarm.

A statement from President Jacob Zuma's office gave no details of the condition of the 94-year-old anti-apartheid leader.

"Former President Mandela will receive medical attention from time to time which is consistent with his age," the statement said.

"President Zuma assures all that Madiba is doing well and there is no cause for alarm," it added, referring to Mandela by his clan name.

Mandela, who became South Africa's first black president after the country's first all-race elections in 1994, was admitted to hospital in February because of abdominal pain but released the following day after a keyhole examination showed there was nothing seriously wrong with him.

He has since spent most of his time in his ancestral home in Qunu, a village in the impoverished Eastern Cape province.

His frail health prevents him from making any public appearances in South Africa, although in the last few months he has continued to receive high-profile visitors, including former U.S. President Bill Clinton.

(Reporting by Ed Cropley; Editing by Andrew Heavens)

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Comments (2)
TomMariner wrote:
One of our most deserved, humble, honored leaders — ever. He was imprisoned for 27 years and took no revenge on his former tormenters, but served all the people of his nation, then refused to run for a second term. As a result his country is a prosperous bright spot in personality led African politics, although more is needed to be done with a large part of the population.

Contrast that with Cuba, where a patriot overthrew a repressive government 53 years ago, and the guy’s ego and bitterness still has him in power, and his country a pariah in some circles. Castro will be remembered as a small tyrant who wore out his usefulness 40 years ago, while Mandela is a larger than life hero to everyone.

Dec 08, 2012 11:37am EST  --  Report as abuse
randburg100 wrote:
I suspect Zuma is getting nervous – whilst Mandela is no longer President, his words carry weight & probably holding SA together. When Mandela goes – it could get messy – accelerating the onset of Zimbabwe Mk2

Dec 08, 2012 12:19pm EST  --  Report as abuse
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