Ailing former president Jacob Zuma has undergone surgery and remains hospitalised, authorities said on Sunday.
Zuma, who is serving a 15-month prison sentence for contempt of court at the Estcourt Correctional Centre, has been in hospital for just over a week.
The 79-year-old was taken to a hospital outside the prison after a routine medical check.
On Sunday the Department of Correctional Services (DCS) said: “Mr. Zuma underwent a surgical procedure on Saturday, 14 August 2021.”
The DCS said other procedures were scheduled for the coming days.
As a result, DCS said it was unable to predict a discharge date.
“Our priority at this stage is for Mr. Zuma to be afforded the best care possible,” said the DCS in a statement.
“As inmates are placed in correctional centres involuntarily, the state has a total and inescapable responsibility and duty to care for them in a manner that does not violate or compromise their constitutional rights, which include access to health care.
“We appeal to all people to refrain from speculating on the health of Mr. Zuma and allow medical practitioners space to continue providing quality healthcare to him.”
Zuma’s lawyer Advocate Dali Mpofu has warned against disclosing the former president’s ailment saying it remained confidential.
The Department of Justice and Constitutional Development has previously said Zuma was within his right to apply for medical parole.