Nelson Mandela is reported to be “well” after being discharged from hospital in Johannesburg, South Africa, where he was having tests. The admission of the 92-year old former President had earlier sparked widespread fears for his health.
The statesman was admitted to hospital in Johannesburg earlier this week, but his medical staff and the Government of South Africa said: “There is no need for us to panic.”
The Deputy President of South Africa, Kgalema Molanthe, told a press conference today: “Madiba is well… He is receiving the best treatment from the best available health professionals and that should reassure all of us that there is no need for us to panic, there is no need for us to fear for Madiba’s health.”
Mr Molanthe is acting President while President Jacob Zuma attends the World Economic Forum in Davos and an African Union summit.
The Surgeon General of South Africa, Vijay Ramlakansay said: “At present Dr Mandela is in high spirits and has been visited by his family and friends. Medically at present there is no need to panic.
“The medical team is satisfied with his recovery and he will be discharged to receive home-based care at his home.
“For a 92-year old he surprises us on a daily basis with his powers of recovery.”
Mr Mandela has not been seen in public since the World Cup final in Johannesburg last July. His attendance marked the perfect end to a competition that has boosted not only his country but all of Africa.
He retired from public life in June 2004 before his 86th birthday, telling his countrymen: “Don’t call me, I’ll call you.”
He remains arguably the world’s most revered statesmen. Jailed in 1964 for his anti-apartheid campaigning, he was finally released in 1990 after 27 years.
He became South Africa’s first black President in 1993 after the country’s first democratic elections. In the same year he won the Nobel Peace Prize.
As President he has played a leading role reformed a post-Apartheid South Africa, and trying to tackle some of his country’s biggest problems, such as Aids. He also played a key role in bringing Africa’s first World Cup to South Africa.
Nelson Mandela’s legacy
During the World Cup, a Nelson Mandela Legacy Gala Auction was hosted at the Sandton Convention Centre. The event attracted stars from across South African society – all of whom came to generously donate to the Nelson Mandela Foundation.
Mr Mandela’s wife Graça Machel was among the guests of honour, joined by Mosima Gabriel Sexwale.
Perhaps better known around the world as Tokyo Sexwale, the elder statesman of South African politics – himself imprisoned on Robben Island for his anti-apartheid activities - offered a heartfelt speech, discussing the role of Mr Mandela in the defeat of apartheid and his continuing legacy today.
The Legacy Gala Dinner was designed to showcase unique fashion and jewellery from around the world and featured a host of African entertainers - including World Cup sensation K’naan.
Appropriately themed ‘Reflections’, the event illustrated the different facets of the legacy of Nelson Mandela as reflected through the eyes of a host of contemporary designers.