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S. African worries about Mandela's condition


08:47, June 26, 2013

PRETORIA, June 25 (Xinhua) -- As the ailing 94-year-old former South African president Nelson Mandela remains in a critical condition, S.African residents expressed their worries about his condition and continued to prey for his health.

"I would prefer to die, rather than he does," a South African resident told Xinhua on Tuesday.

"Mandela's condition has been worsening in recent days, we are very worried for him," said the Johannesburg businessman Albert Khoza beside the main entrance of the Mediclinic Heart Hospital in Pretoria.

Mandela is spending his 18th day inside the hospital following being admitted here for receiving the urgent treatment with the serious recurring lung infection on June 8.

On Sunday evening the Presidency announced that Mandela's condition had deteriorated over the past 24 hours and he was now critical.

Khoza told Xinhua he has a deep love for Mandela and the whole nation has a deep love for him. "We are now enjoying the freedom, like making money, shopping and living. We are free to do anything in our country," he told Xinhua.

"This should be attributed to the Mandela's efforts in dozens of years to end the apartheid in South Africa,"added he.

"Mandela gives us a new life, we would like to do anything for him, even sacrificing our lives if he could live as long as possible," Khoza told Xinhua.

Updating the information on the health of Mandela on Tuesday afternoon, the Presidency said Mandela's condition remained unchanged and doctors were continuing to do their best to ensure his recovery.

Many red flowers, hanging balloons and colorful cards are attached to the wall of the main entrance of the hospital, which has become a holy place for praying and saying well-wish for Mandela in a critical condition.

Some roses and heart designs are attached to the messages on the cards and pages, catching the wide attention.

One hand-made card message read: "Mandela, our thoughts are with you", while the other card wrote: "You are a strong man and a father to the whole nation, we love you and get well soon."

As the new well-wishers, a group of cadets from a police college nearby came to the holy wall on Tuesday afternoon, silently leaving red flowers and praying pages.

"We are members of the South African police service, keeping you in our prayers, may the Good Lord shine his face on you, may you enjoy his favor, peace, mercy and joy," the well-wishing message on the page said.

"We are praying to our Lord Jesus Christ to quiet the storms that our beloved Mandela is going through," added the printed message attached to the wall by the police cadets.

The well-known local and international media have been stationing outside the hospital since Mandela was hospitalized here on June 8, focusing on the progress on the treatment of the hospitalized anti-aprtheid icon.

Over the past two weeks South African government officials and Mandela's family members were here to visit him, such as President Jacob Zuma and several ministers as well as Mandela's three daughters and some grandchildren.

This is the third time for Mandela to be admitted to hospital this year.On March 27, he was hospitalized after doctors diagnosed him of having pneumonia.

He was also admitted in December for the recurrent lung infection.

Mandela suffered from tuberculosis when he was incarcerated for 27 years before the apartheid ended in 1994. Next month he would turn 95.

Mandela was the first democratically-elected president in South Africa after the apartheid ended in 1994, having an honor of the state father in the country.

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