S.Africa government denies Mandela discharged


JOHANNESBURG: South Africa’s presidency on Saturday denied reports that Nelson Mandela had been discharged from hospital and had returned to his Johannesburg home.

Mac Maharaj said he had received no word from doctors about Mandela being released, as reported by the BBC and Britain’s Sky television.

“I have not been told that,” he told AFP. “I don’t think that is true.”

“Madiba is still in hospital in Pretoria and remains in a critical but stable condition,” Maharaj later said in a statement.

During Mandela’s more than 80-day time in hospital, the presidency through Maharaj has been the official source of information about the anti-apartheid icon’s condition.

The 95-year-old has been in hospital since June 8 and for most of that period has been in critical condition.