Nelson Mandela’s Heath Condition Deteriorates

Nelson Mandela is in a critical condition, South Africa’s presidency announced, signaling a significant and sudden deterioration in the health of the 94-year-old anti-apartheid icon in his third week of hospitalization for a recurrent lung infection.

“The condition of former President Nelson Mandela, who is still in hospital in Pretoria, has become critical,” said presidential spokesman Mac Maharaj, 16 days after Mandela was admitted to the Mediclinic Heart Hospital for treatment of the lung infection.

President Jacob Zuma, accompanied by African National Congress Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, visited Mandela last evening.

“They were briefed by the medical team who informed them that the former president’s condition had become critical over the past 24 hours,” a statement from the presidency said.

Mandela, who was admitted to the hospital on June 8, was earlier said to be in a serious but stable condition.

Zuma and Ramaphosa also met Mandela’s wife, Graca Machel, at the hospital and discussed his health condition.

“The doctors are doing everything possible to get his condition to improve and are ensuring that Madiba (Mandela’s clan name) is well-looked after and is comfortable. He is in good hands,” Zuma was quoted in the statement.

The latest statement from the Presidency is the strongest indication yet that all is not well with the ailing elder statesman, who will turn 95 in three weeks.

The statement on his health came amid mounting public outcry after it was reported that the ambulance transporting Mandela to the hospital from his Johannesburg home broke down and paramedics had to treat him for almost 40 minutes before a second one arrived.

Read more: ET


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