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Government: Mandela Remains in Stable, Critical Condition

FILE - Former South African president Nelson Mandela smiles for photographers at his home in Johannesburg on September 22, 2005.
Former South African president Nelson Mandela remains in stable, but critical condition more than two months after returning home following treatment for a lung infection.

The South African government released a statement following a visit by President Jacob Zuma to the anti-apartheid hero at his home on Monday.

According to the statement, President Zuma conveyed to Mandela the well wishes of "all South Africans" and presented him with an award from the Mahathir Global Peace Foundation, which he received on his behalf in Malaysia.

Mr. Zuma's visit comes before Monday's official opening of a permanent exhibition on the former leaders life at the Nelson Mandela Foundation in Johannesburg.

The 95-year-old Mandela spent 87-days in a Pretoria hospital for a recurring lung infection, a legacy of the nearly three decades he spent in jail as a political prisoner under apartheid.

His former wife Winnie Mandela recently told a local newspaper that he remains quite ill and is unable to speak because of tubes being used to clear fluid from his lungs.

Mandela is revered internationally for his role in ending official racial discrimination and white minority rule. After spending 27 years in prison, he won the Nobel Peace Prize in1993 and was elected South Africa's first black president the following year.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.