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Messages of support stream in for Madiba

As word of Nelson Mandela’s hospitalisation spreads, thousands have sent messages of well-wishes.

Journalists camped outside a Pretoria hospital waiting for news about Former President Nelson Mandela's health. Picture: Shain Germaner/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The African National Congress (ANC) has expressed concern after Nelson Mandela was admitted to hospital in the early hours of this morning.

Earlier today The Presidency issued a statement saying Madiba has had a recurrence of a past lung infection.

The Presidency says Madiba's condition deteriorated in the early hours of this morning and he's been taken to a Pretoria hospital for treatment.

It says the elderly statesman remains in a serious but stable condition.

Presidency Spokesman Mac Maharaj has told enca Mandela's condition is serious this time.

It is his fourth stay in hospital for this recurring lung infection since December.

The ANC's Keith Khosa says they believe he is in capable hands.

"We wish that he should recover speedily. We believe he will receive all the necessary care from the medical staff."

In April Mandela was discharged from hospital after spending nine days at an undisclosed Pretoria facility.

He was treated for a recurring lung infection and resulting pneumonia - the third health scare in four months for the Nobel Peace Prize laureate.

He was admitted earlier in March and spent last Christmas in hospital for a similar illness and a procedure to remove gallstones.

While wishing Madiba a speedy recovery, President Jacob Zuma has urged the media and public to respect the family's privacy.

At the same time British Prime Minister David Cameron has tweeted Madiba get well wishes.

The Democratic Alliance (DA)'s MMusi Maimane has also wished Madiba a speedy recovery.

"Our thoughts are with him. Even as we met as a national executive his health has been discussed in this regard."

Proteas cricketer AB de Villiers earlier tweeted, "Get well soon, Madiba."

While the Highveld Lions's official account wrote, "Out thoughts and prayers are with Madiba."

The ANC, the DA and Proudly South Africa are among the organisations that have issued statements for the former president to get well soon.

Lead SA has also called for the nation to pray for Madiba.

Meanwhile, one of Nelson Mandela's daughters has been seen leaving the Pretoria hospital.

Journalists are gathered outside the Pretoria facility, although it hasn't been confirmed which hospital the former statesman is being treated at.