There has been sustained improvement in the condition of Nelson Mandela from the recurring lung infection that is forcing him to spend a ninth day in hospital, South Africa's president said today.
President Jacob Zuma said Mr Mandela remains in a serious condition but that over the last two days his doctors have said the improvements in his health have been sustained.
Mr Zuma added that the former president "continues to engage with family".
Speaking at a Youth Day celebration in South Africa, Mr Zuma asked the audience to join him in wishing Mr Mandela a happy father's day.
As the leader of South Africa's anti-apartheid movement, Mr Mandela spent 27 years in prison during white racist rule. He was freed in 1990 and became South Africa's first black president in 1994.