As Nelson Mandela nears the end of his personal ‘long walk to freedom’, he continues the struggle from his hospital bed – however this time not against a mortal foe, but an immortal one. After nearly four weeks in hospital, his condition remains critical.

As South African’s we thought this day would never come, and now that it has we are resisting it as strongly as Madiba is himself. It is as if both parties know how important he is to the welfare of our young democracy; like an abandoned child we hold onto his hand; like a loving father he longs to stay, even though he knows he cannot. Both must let go, but neither will.His famous words from the dock in his treason trial now haunt us: ‘…it is a struggle I will die for…’

As the entire country waits, watches and holds its breath, Mandela’s condition has improved slightly. He has reportedly opened his eyes and acknowledged those visiting.