South Africans are breathing a collective sigh of relief at the news their former president and national icon, Nelson Mandela, should leave hospital on Monday at the latest.
The 93-year-old was admitted to an undisclosed hospital on Saturday morning with a stomach complaint, but according to the ruling ANC party he is now comfortable and all went according to plan.
ANC spokesman Keith Khoza said: “President Mandela is fine, that’s what we want to reassure people. It wasn’t an emergency, his admission was not an emergency. It was just to make sure he undergoes a procedure to determine the complaint.”
For most South Africans, Mandela will always personify the struggle against apartheid and his failing health is a matter of national concern.
There was widespread panic when he was hospitalised with a chest injection last year. He has not appeared in public since.