Qunu monitors Madiba's progress

Qunu residents are watching the news closely hoping to get an update on Madiba's health.

Former South African President and Nobel peace prize laureate Nelson Mandela laughs during a meeting at the Mandela Foundation with Idol runner-up Gift Gwe (not pictured) in Johannesburg, 07 December 2005. Mandela met 07 December Idol winner Karin and runner-up Gift Gwe, to congratulate them on their achievments. AFP PHOTO/GIANLUIGI GUERCIA

JOHANNESBURG - Some residents outside Mandela's hometown of Qunu in the Eastern Cape say they are trying to follow the few updates they are able to get on his condition.

As most people are going about their daily business, others are posing to reflect on the life of the man they call their icon.

Some have told Eyewitness News they are not sure whether the elderly statesman will be able to shake of his ailment this time around because of his advanced age.

Butterworth resident Bongani Ntantana says he is an admirer of the anti-apartheid legend.

Ntantana says he has a vivid image of a strong Madiba after he saw him outside his home several years ago.

He adds that is how he wants to remember Madiba.


Security remains tight at the Mediclinic Heart Hospital in Pretoria where the former statesman is being treated for a recurring lung infection.

This is the 94-year-old's fourth stay at the facility since December.

At least eight police officers have been deployed to the front end side entrances of the hospital where they are searching vehicles entering the facility.

A cordon has also been erected near the main entrance to prevent the media from setting up on the pavement.

EWN's Barry Bateman reports via Google Hangouts from outside the Mediclinic Heart Hospital:

In his last update, Presidential spokesman Mac Maharaj said Madiba was in a serious but stable condition.

Maharaj said President Jacob Zuma would visit Madiba at the appropriate time.

It is understood the president is currently in Cape Town.

On Monday, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela visited her ex-husband in hospital.


A bus carrying 30 pupils from Rainbow Hill Christian School arrived outside Madiba's Houghton home on Tuesday morning.

The principal directed the children in two rows and the choir started singing get well songs for Madiba.

Grade six pupil Lebohang Seriti said a short prayer for the man dubbed the father of the nation.

"I just want to say, Mandela get well and we are praying for you all the time."

Principal Zodwa Silinda said, "He loves the kids and that's why I decided to bring them here."

She said South Africans will always remember Madiba for his courage and for the changes he brought to the country.

EWN's Mandy Wiener reports via Google Hangouts from outside Nelson Mandela's Houghton home:

(Edited and compiled by Abed Ahmed & Lindiwe Mlandu)