Mandela's hospital discharge shows 'progress': South African President Zuma

Former South African president Nelson Mandela in Johannesburg on Sept 22, 2005. Mr Mandela's discharge after nearly three months in hospital showed that he had made "progress", South African President Jacob Zuma said on Tuesday, Sept 3, 2013, ad
Former South African president Nelson Mandela in Johannesburg on Sept 22, 2005. Mr Mandela's discharge after nearly three months in hospital showed that he had made "progress", South African President Jacob Zuma said on Tuesday, Sept 3, 2013, adding he is responding to treatment at home. -- FILE PHOTO: REUTERS

JOHANNESBURG (AFP) - Mr Nelson Mandela's discharge after nearly three months in hospital showed that he had made "progress", South African President Jacob Zuma said on Tuesday, adding he is responding to treatment at home.

"I think we feel very good... that he could leave hospital which indicates the progress he has made," Mr Zuma told journalists.

"He remains critical but stable, responding to treatment," said Mr Zuma.

South Africa's first black president spent 86 days, including his 95th birthday in July, in a Pretoria hospital for a recurring respiratory illness.

Army and private ambulances transported him to his Johannesburg home on Sunday, where he will continue to receive intensive care from the same doctors who looked after him in hospital.

But concerns linger about the health of an elderly man who has been in and out of hospital four times in the last year.

In the past few months, the Nobel peace laureate was once said to be on life support and there were unconfirmed reports he had to be resuscitated.

Despite an upbeat mood resulting from his release from hospital, medical experts say he still faces a long and uncertain road to recovery.

"We acknowledge that he is old and that he is not well, but we are very happy that he has gone home," said Mr Zuma.