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SA unites behind Madiba

South Africans from all walks of life continue to show their love for former president Nelson Mandela.

Madiba memorabilia on sale at Greenmarket Square on 1 July 2013. Picture: Giovanna Gerbi/EWN

PRETORIA/CAPE TOWN - The hospital where former president Nelson Mandela is being treated continues to attract a steady stream of visitors on Monday afternoon.

South Africans from all walks of life have stopped by to wish Madiba well.

Bouquets continue to grow, but the majority of tributes for the statesman come in the form of individual messages penned on colourful paper.

The last official update on Madiba's health was on Thursday.

Four days later, South Africans want reassurance from the Presidency.

Madiba's wife Graça Machel and Parliamentary Speaker Max Sisulu indicated over the weekend that the global icon was making progress.

At the same time, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan says this is the time for all South Africans to unite with the Mandela family as he remains in a critical but stable condition in hospital.

Madiba was admitted to the Mediclinic Heart Hospital more than three weeks ago with a recurring lung infection.

Gordhan says South Africa must keep Madiba in its thoughts.

MADIBA MEMORABILIA

Some Greenmarket Square vendors in Cape Town say Madiba memorabilia is flying off the shelves.

Eyewitness News went shopping to see how in-demand items with the former president's face are.

Shweshwe fabric coined purses; t-shirts and hand painted cloths with Madiba's face are on sale around the square.

Vendor Alex Gutto says she will be getting more stock as locals and tourists alike are asking for t-shirts that sell for R100.

"Last week, many people were buying. This morning I sold Madiba t-shirts as well."

However, Rastafarian Kipande Gogo says he does not want to take advantage of the ailing statesman.

"I didn't put in stock because I don't keep Mandela t-shirts to make money off Mandela. I know everyone is cashing in because he's in hospital."

Some vendors in Cape Town said there is red tape around selling items with Madiba's image.

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