Cape Town - There never was anything wrong with Madiba, the Minister of Defence and Military Veterans Lindiwe Sisulu said today after the former President yesterday underwent a planned medical procedure.
"There was never anything wrong with him. The reason we took him to hospital was he did have a discomfort, on an ongoing basis," said Sisulu.
"The only way we could finally get to the bottom of this was by taking him to hospital and by having a number of tests to find out if in fact was prescribed, what we were giving him was working and whether we could not make it any better and that is what we would do on a regular basis, as and when we treat him (sic).
"There never was anything wrong with him, he's okay. In fact, I looked at some of the pictures that are in the newspapers today and I wished that you had had his most recent picture. He looks very handsome, very healthy."
She said Mandela had undergone diagnostic laparoscopy, which entailed probing for the cause of his discomfort.
"So it wasn't the surgery that was out there in the media, at all," she said.
"He's fine and he's recovering from the anaesthetic. He's as fine as can be at his age. He's fine and handsome."
On a question on when Madiba would be released from hospital, Sisulu called on the media to respect his privacy and would not disclose when he would be released.
She said several ministries planned to hold a joint discussion soon with the media on how best to report - in the most responsible and sensitive way - on any further Madiba health matters.