Cape Town: Doctors treating anti-apartheid hero and South Africa's first black president Nelson Mandela are satisfied with the progress he is making, but are in no hurry to send him home yet, President Jacob Zuma said.
"They (doctors) say there is no crisis, but add that they are in no hurry to send him home just yet until they are satisfied that he has made sufficient progress," Xinhua quoted Zuma as saying.
Mandela has been hospitalized since Dec 8 for a lung infection and gallstones. He underwent a successful surgery to have the gallstones removed. He remains under medical care in a Pretoria hospital and is recovering, according to the Presidency.
"If he spends more days in hospital, it is because that necessary care is being provided. We wish the family strength during this period. They have the love and support of the whole nation," Zuma said.
While once again urging the public to continue supporting Mandela, Zuma said people should understand that Mandela is 94 years old and needs extra care.
Presidential spokesperson Mac Maharaj went to see Mandela Tuesday. "He is looking much better," Maharaj said.
Mandela's health has been a cause for concern. His hospital stay this time is his longest since 2001, when he underwent seven weeks of radiotherapy after being diagnosed with prostate cancer.
In January 2011, Mandela was admitted to a Johannesburg hospital for an acute respiratory infection. In February this year, he spent a night in a hospital for a minor diagnostic surgery to determine the cause of an abdominal complain.
Mandela, who was imprisoned for 27 years during the apartheid, became the country's first black president in 1994.