JOHANNESBURG (AP) — Former South Africa President Nelson Mandela‘s health has improved, his grandson said Saturday as the 94-year-old spent his eighth day in the hospital recovering from a lung infection.
Mandla Mandela said that when he left his grandfather in Pretoria, before heading to Qunu for a family memorial, “we saw the improvement in his health.”
“The old man is not only ours, but he is for the people of South Africa, Africa, and the whole world,” he said at the funeral of elderly cousin, Florence Nondlela Mandela, in Mandela’s home village in South Africa’s Eastern Cape. “We would like to say, even tomorrow, these prayers are the ones that will make him strong, so that he can feel better and rise from that hospital bed.”
Dozens of children traveled from Soweto to the northern Johannesburg suburb of Houghton where Mandela lives. In light blue hats, white and orange tops, and blue skirts, some held mini South African flags and marched down the street, singing the national anthem. Others in the group held posters that said “We love you Tata,” and “Long Live.”
“What made us to come here today is because of we heard that our old man is in hospital,” said Chris Gumbi the chairman of the African Kids Group. “Please wake up where you are, we need you, I mean, South Africans they need you. I think the whole world is shaking now so we need the old man.”
The children then left their posters against a wall outside the beloved statesman’s home.
Mandela’s daughters, Zindzi, Makaziwe and Zenani Dlamini were among those who visited the anti-apartheid leader Saturday in a Pretoria hospital.