This comes as a member of Madiba’s family confirmed that the former president was on life support. President Jacob Zuma also cancelled a planned trip to Mozambique after visiting Mandela at 22:00 on Wednesday.
Meanwhile messages of goodwill have been flooding in from overseas.
In only her fifth ever tweet, Hillary Clinton offered “love and prayers to our great friend, Madiba, his family and his nation during this difficult time”, AFP reported.
UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon also said that the whole world is praying for Madiba.
Meanwhile, Sapa reports that a dozen candles burnt through the night on Thursday at the Pretoria hospital where Mandela is being treated.
The candles were placed next to a miniature art gallery established by well-wishers on the security wall of the Medi-Clinic Heart hospital in Arcadia, east of Pretoria.
Multicoloured balloons, flowers, pictures and paintings of Madiba, hundreds of get-well-soon cards, flags and banners totally eclipsed the Medi-Clinic signboard at the Celliers Street entrance.
Before 03:00, most journalists had left and only a few were milling around near the hospital.
After midnight, several news crews, mainly international broadcasters, were doing live crossings near the Celliers Street entrance.
Numerous tents, generators, broadcasting cameras on tripods and outside broadcast vans have become a permanent feature on the street’s sidewalk since Madiba was admitted for a recurring lung infection on 8 June.