JOHANNESBURG: South African President Jacob Zuma has sought to reassure an uneasy nation that Nelson Mandela, although in a “very serious” condition as he battles a recurrent lung infection, is receiving the best of care.
Zuma got a briefing on Tuesday (Wednesday in Manila) from doctors on the condition of the frail anti-apartheid icon, who has showed no sign of improvement after four days at the Mediclinic Heart Hospital in Pretoria.
In a terse interview recorded on Tuesday, Zuma said that the 94-year-old father of modern South Africa was in a stable condition.
“We are all feeling it, that our president, the real father of democracy in South Africa, is in the hospital,” said Zuma as Mandela was to spend a fifth day in hospital.
“We need him to be with us,” Zuma said. “And I’m sure, knowing him as I do, he’s a good fighter and he’ll be with us very soon.”