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Johannesburg - Former president Nelson Mandela's family are celebrating his return home on Sunday morning after being discharged from hospital, his grandson Mandla Mandela said.
“It is a day of celebration for us that he is finally back home with us,” said the young Mandela.
He added that Madiba's discharge was “particularly heartening because it flies in the face of those who have been busy spreading lies that he was in a 'vegetative state' and just waiting for his support machines to be switched off”.
Madiba's grandson said these kind of people had been “in effect declaring him dead while he was fully alive”.
He said the family thanked all those who had prayed for Madiba's wellbeing.
“Finally everyone can breathe a sigh of relief that our prayers have found favour with the almighty”.
The presidency announced earlier that Mandela had been discharged from the Mediclinic Heart hospital in Pretoria on Sunday, after being admitted on June 8 for a recurring lung infection.
Presidential spokesman Mac Maharaj said in a statement that Mandela's condition remained critical and “at times unstable”.
Maharaj said Mandela's home had been reconfigured to ensure he received the correct intensive care, and the same staff who had been at the hospital would care for him at home.
Earlier, a large media contingent gathered outside to watch Madiba return to his Hougton home. Two ambulances were parked outside his home during the morning and a third was seen leaving the premises.
Mandla Mandela also expressed thanks to the government, the ANC and his grandfather's doctors.
He also thanked the presidency for its “sterling job” in issuing updates, “keeping the public updated about Madiba's health amidst false reporting and often negative rumours of doom spread all over the world by unscrupulous individuals”.
Madiba's grandson said he was aware that his grandfather was “not a young man anymore and not getting younger...
“As long as he is still with us, we will celebrate every day with him. It is our prayer that the almighty will give him good health for as long as he is with us on this earth.” - Sapa