independent

Thursday 24 April 2014

Minister sorry for Mandela mistake

An Australian politician has apologised after incorrectly announcing that Nelson Mandela, who was admitted to hospital on June 8, had died

An Australian politician has apologised to South Africa's high commissioner for incorrectly announcing that Nelson Mandela had died.

Resources minister Gary Gray acknowledged he wrongly told guests attending a Minerals Council of Australia dinner at Parliament House that the anti-apartheid leader was dead.

"I apologise unreservedly and am deeply sorry to have relayed what I thought was reliable advice," Mr Gray said in a statement.

Mr Mandela is in a critical condition in hospital. The 94-year-old former president was admitted to the Pretoria hospital on June 8 to be treated for what the government said was a recurring lung infection.

Mr Mandela was jailed for 27 years under white racist rule. He was freed in 1990 and became South Africa's first black president in 1994.

Press Association

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