Govt staying mum on jetsetting Motlanthe

2012-10-24 12:05
Kgalema Motlanthe (GCIS)

Kgalema Motlanthe (GCIS)

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Johannesburg - The department of defence has declined to comment on a report on Wednesday that it leased a private jet, at a cost of several million rand, to fly deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe.

"We do not discuss the transportation of VVIP (very, very important people)," said defence spokesperson Siphiwe Dlamini.

Eyewitness News (EWN) reported on Wednesday that Motlanthe was flown to Italy earlier this month on a private Boeing 727, despite the country having an "adequate air force fleet".

A photograph posted on a government website showed Motlanthe exiting the plane with his partner Gugu Mtshali.

EWN reported that the aircraft was owned by African National Congress supporter and arms dealer Ivor Ichikowitz.

It was the same plane used by President Jacob Zuma in his controversial shadow plane trip to the United Nations general assembly, in New York, last year.

It also reported that an official Air Force Falcon 50 was used to fly African Union Commission chairperson Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma to Addis Ababa, in Ethiopia, last week, even though she was no longer a government official.

Dlamini confirmed that Dlamini-Zuma was flown in a state aircraft.

"The flight was an official task. It was a gesture to the AU and was a contribution by the South African government," he said.

In July, the government canned a R2bn deal to procure a new jet for the president.
- SAPA
Read more on:    kgalema motlanthe  |  government spending  |  military
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