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'Zuma to visit Madiba soon'

The Presidency says President Jacob Zuma will visit Madiba at an appropriate time.

Former South African President and Nobel peace prize laureate Nelson Mandela. Picture:AFP

JOHANNESBURG - The Presidency on Monday confirmed President Jacob Zuma would be visiting Mandela in hospital.

Earlier, it issued a new statement on Madiba's health saying his condition remained unchanged in intensive care.

The former president was admitted to a Pretoria facility during the early hours of Saturday morning.

Presidential spokesman Mac Maharaj dismissed reports all visitors except Mandela's family were allowed to visit him in hospital.

"There's no substance to these sort of stories that have been out on that. President Jacob Zuma will be visiting him at an appropriate time."

However, he would not elaborate on when this visit would take place.

"The issue is Madiba. What is best for him rather than any hype about President Zuma's visit."

EWN's Barry Bateman recaps what we know thus far.

MISCHIEVOUS STORIES

At the same time, the ANC also criticised newspaper reports that the Mandela family had effectively banned anyone but relatives from visiting the statesman, labelling them mischievous and malicious.

The Star reported that the Mandela family have instructed hospital staff to allow no one but relatives to see him.

But the ANC said it was not told about any ban on visits by senior government and ruling party officials.

The party's Jackson Mthembu said, "Our priority is to see Madiba get well. Therefore as the ANC we have not even thought of visiting him in hospital because we are giving him and the hospital staff privacy."

The ANC said its members would continue to pray for Madiba's recovery and have called on all South Africans and the world to keep Mandela's family in their thoughts and prayers.

The party said it appreciates the good work the medical team continues to do in attending to the ailing statesman.

Meanwhile, journalists are still gathering outside the facility where Madiba is believed to be receiving treatment.

To view today's full statement from the Presidency, click here