Nelson Mandela, 94, former president of South Africa, is in the hospital with a lung infection, according to a statement from the office of South Africa’s current leader, President Jacob Zuma.
Mandela,, Zuma’s statement said, had a recurrence o fhte illness in the last few days. After his condition deteriorated at about 1:30 a.m. on Saturday, he was transferred to a Pretoria hospital.
Reportedly, Mandela is listed in “serious but stable” condition and is receiving expert medical care.
“This morning at about 1:30 am (0930 Saturday AEST) his condition deteriorated and he was transferred to a Pretoria hospital. He remains in a serious but stable condition,” a statement from President Jacob Zuma’s office announced.
“This morning at about 1.30 am, his condition deteriorated and he was transferred to a Pretoria hospital,” stated spokesman Mac Maharaj in a statement.
“He remains in a serious but stable condition.”
“President Jacob Zuma, on behalf of government and the nation, wishes Madiba a speedy recovery and requests the media and the public to respect the privacy of Madiba and his family,” Maharaj said.
In South Africa, Mandela is often called “Madiba” because that is his Xhosa clan name.
This marks the second hospitalization for the ailing anti-apartheid hero in the past two months.
He was released from hospital on April 6 after being treated for pneumonia during a 10-day stay.
Mandela was discharged from hospital after receiving treatment for his recurring lung problems. The Nobel Peace Prize laureate has previously suffered from lung ailments.
Mandela’s earlier ailments include being admitted to a Pretoria hospital for a scheduled check-up and was discharged the following day in March.
In December last year, Mandela underwent a a gallstone operation his recurring lung infection was also treated. After an 18-day stay, he was discharged and placed under home-based high care at his Houghton home.
The office of the presidency said in January that Mandela had made a full recovery from the surgery and continued to improve. Then in February last year, Mandla was admitted to hospital for a stomach ailment.
Mandela was imprisoned for his anti-apartheid political stance. He became president in South Africa’s all-race elections in 1994, and he has become a beloved and well-respected figure on the world stage. He has been suffering from ill health the last couple of years.
According to the office of the presidency, Mandela also underwent a diagnostic procedure to investigate the cause of a long-standing abdominal complaint.
Mandela was taken to Milpark Hospital in January 2011,or routine tests relating to respiratory problems.
In July 2010, at the final match of of the Fifa World Cup at Soccer City stadium in Johannesburg, marked Nelson Mandela’s last public appearance.
Following his World Cup appearance, Mandela has spent his time between Johannesburg and his ancestral village of Qunu in the Eastern Cape.
Written by: Douglas Cobb