Nelson Mandela hospitalised for medical check-up



Johannesburg: Anti-apartheid icon and former South African President Nelson Mandela was hospitalised on Saturday for a "scheduled medical checkup", months after he was treated for a lung infection and gallstones.

"Former president Nelson Mandela was admitted to hospital in Pretoria this afternoon, March 9, for a scheduled medical checkup to manage the existing conditions in line with his age," presidential spokesman Mac Maharaj said in a statement.

"Doctors are conducting tests and have thus far indicated that there is no reason for any alarm," the statement said.

The 94-year-old spent 18 days in hospital in December.

He was treated for a lung infection and gallstones. His health has been a cause of concern for many years.

Mandela served as South Africa's first black president from 1994 to 1999 and is widely regarded as the father of the nation for leading the struggle against apartheid and for democracy.

He first contracted tuberculosis in the 1980s while detained in Robben Island prison.

Mandela has been admitted to hospital on three occasions in the past two years. In January, 2011, he was treated for a chest infection in Johannesburg.

The former president has been rarely seen in public since retiring from public life in 2004.

PTI