Well, South African President Nelson Mandela has finally been released to go home early on Sunday morning. He has been in the Pretoria hospital for 85 days for a recurrent lung infection that reportedly stems from a tuberculosis infection he fought whie serving a 27-year sentence for anti-apartheid actions.
The office of the current South African President Jacob Zuma released a statement confirming that he would be released. The statement also said that the country’s first Black President would return to his home on the outskirts of Johannesburg, which has been altered to care for him there.
“[Mandela’s] team of doctors are convinced that he will receive the same level of intensive care at his Houghton home that he received in Pretoria,” the statement read in part. “His home has been reconfigured to allow him to receive intensive care there. The health care personnel providing care at his home are the very same who provided care to him in hospital. If there are health conditions that warrant another admission to hospital in future, this will be done.”
The President had previously urged his country to accept the fact that the man known as “Madiba”, meaning Father, was old and frail and urged them to pray for him. People around the world joined in those efforts as well sending well-wishes and tributes to show respect for the man who’s people consider him the father of their country.
Mandela was first admitted to the Pretoria hospital on June 8th, and passed his 95th birthday there on July 18th. He was not well enough to receive President Obama When he visited earlier this summer. Zuma’s office urged citizens to allow the former President, who served a single five year presidential term after the world petitioned for his prison release, the space and privacy he needs to fully recover.
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