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Jansen must prove claims - Presidency

Officials said the accusations cast aspersions on the integrity of President Jacob Zuma's office.

UFS Rector Jonathan Jansen. Picture: AFP.

JOHANNESBURG - The Presidency on Tuesday hit back at University of the Free State rector Jonathan Jansen for claiming it was lying about former president Nelson Mandela's health.

It was on Monday that Jansen said presidential spokesperson Mac Maharaj misled the public by saying Madiba was simply going in for a check-up in March.

Spokesperson for the Ministry in the Presidency Harold Maloka said the accusation cast aspersions on the integrity of President Jacob Zuma's office.

"The Presidency is supposed to have integrity and communicate the information with the nation.

"We feel [Jansen] should prove his statement or retract it."

Jansen told media his comments were taken out of context.

He said he had nothing but utter admiration and respect for Madiba.

Madiba was discharged from a Pretoria hospital on Saturday after spending nine days for treatment for a recurring lung infection.