Former Zimbabwe leader Robert Mugabe has been hospitalized in Singapore for four months, said his successor, President Emmerson Mnangagwa.

Mr. Mnangagwa said the 95-year-old “founding father of our nation” was receiving treatment for an illness and was reacting well.

In a statement issued on Monday, he added:

“Unlike the past when the former president needed only about a month for his care, his doctors decided this time to keep him under observation much longer than last April, when he left for his last routine examination“.

President Mnangagwa announced in November that Mugabe could no longer walk because of health problems and the weight of age.

When the government announced in April that it had gone to Singapore for medical treatment, he said he was expected in Zimbabwe in mid-May.

Mnangagwa said he sent a team to Singapore last week to hear from the former leader, and “because of the good progress he is making, Mugabe could be released soon enough.”

Zimbabwe’s public health services are virtually non-existent, and those who can afford them receive treatment in South Africa or abroad.

Mr. Mnangagwa, who took power in November 2017 with the support of the military – ending Mr Mugabe’s 37-year reign.

He was elected in disputed elections last July; he has always emphasized the excellence of his relations with “comrade” Mugabe.