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More well-wishers at Mandela hospital

A Vilakazi Street vendor hopes to sell more merchandise in the visitor-friendly area in Orlando West where Nelson Mandela's first house is situated, Wednesday, 26 June 2013 as the anti-apartheid icon spends his 19th day in a critical condition in hospital. Picture: Werner Beukes/SAPA

A Vilakazi Street vendor hopes to sell more merchandise in the visitor-friendly area in Orlando West where Nelson Mandela's first house is situated, Wednesday, 26 June 2013 as the anti-apartheid icon spends his 19th day in a critical condition in hospital. Picture: Werner Beukes/SAPA

Published Jun 26, 2013

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Pretoria - More members of the public gathered outside the Pretoria hospital on Wednesday where former president Nelson Mandela is critically ill.

About 20 children from the Thanduxolo Day Care Centre arrived at the hospital's Celliers Street entrance to post their hand-made card on the wall and to recite a poem.

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Part of the poem, translated from Zulu, was “Hold on old man”.

Julia Masango, a woman who works at a nearby supermarket, came to show support for her long-time icon.

“I am very sad that he is sick, he must get better or the gods must release him,” said Masango.

Madiba's ex-wife Winnie Madikizela-Mandela arrived shortly before 1.45pm.

Security has been increased at the facility. More police are manning its two entrances, and they are using mirrors to inspect the undersides of cars entering the premises.

Tshwane metro police officers cordoned off Celliers Street on Wednesday, were letting through only the cars of journalists and those of people living nearby.

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Earlier in the day, Dr Vejay Ramlakan arrived at the hospital. He is the country's former surgeon general. He stepped down earlier this year.

The presidency said on Tuesday that the anti-apartheid icon remained in a critical condition.

“(Mandela's) condition remains unchanged in hospital, and doctors continue to do their best to ensure his recovery, well-being, and comfort,” spokesman Mac Maharaj said in a statement. - Sapa

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