He's getting better: Achmat ‘Sharkboy’ Hassiem’s mother thanks SA for support

Speaking to Eyewitness News from his bedside, Hassiem's mother, Thoraiyah, is positive her son will make a full recovery.

Achmat Hassiem. Picture: Supplied

The family of South African swimmer, Achmat "Sharkboy" Hassiem on Sunday thanked those who are praying for his recovery.

The 39-year-old Paralympic bronze medallist is on life support, at a Cape Town hospital.

He was admitted on 8 September and suffered complications after undergoing a spinal operation.

Hassiem coined the nickname Sharkboy after surviving a shark attack in 2006.

Speaking to Eyewitness News from his bedside, Hassiem's mother, Thoraiyah, is positive her son will make a full recovery.

“We know Achmat is a fighter. He fought through that shark attack, and he will fight through this too.”

She said complications arose after he had the spinal surgery.

“He had a spinal operation, and he was fine. Then he just struggled to breathe, his neck started to swell up, and they had to do another emergency operation and put him on life support and in an induced coma."

The public were alerted when his former school, Bergvliet High, took to social media appealing for prayer.

She said as a result of this, Hassiem was already showing signs of progress.

“Every day when we come to hospital, there's some improvement; his vitals are looking much better now, his temperature came down. Every day is a better day.”

The Hassiem family has asked the public to continue praying for their son.

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