Nelson Mandela released from hospital for treatment at home

Thu, Dec 27, 2012, 00:00

Former South African president Nelson Mandela was released from hospital yesterday.

The anti-apartheid icon has been in hospital since December 8th being treated for a lung infection and having gallstones removed, a government spokesman said.

Officials said he would continue to receive medical care at his home in Johannesburg .

In recent days, officials said Mr Mandela (94) was improving and in good spirits, but doctors have taken extraordinary care with his health because of his age.

Presidential spokesman Mac Maharaj said Mr Mandela would receive more medical care at home until he fully recovered. He requested that the public respect the former president’s privacy.

Mr Mandela is revered around the world as a symbol of sacrifice and reconciliation, his legacy forged in the fight against apartheid, the system of white minority rule that kept him in prison for 27 years.

He was released from prison in 1990.

The Nobel laureate served one five-year term as president after South Africa’s first democratic elections in 1994.

Although the country today is still struggling with poverty and inequality of wealth and opportunity, Mr Mandela is widely credited with helping to avert chaos driven by racial tensions as South Africa emerged from apartheid.

South African president Jacob Zuma was among those who joined Mr Mandela’s wife, Graça Machel, and other family members in wishing a merry Christmas to Mr Mandela at his hospital bedside in Pretoria, the South African capital. – (AP)