New presidential jet will make Nkandla seem like child's play - Maimane

2016-09-15 18:04

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Johannesburg - A new presidential aircraft will make Nkandla seem like child's play, DA leader Mmusi Maimane said on Thursday.

“Nkandla as a project is only a quarter of a billion. Times that by over 16 times. These are lavish expenses that South Africans don’t need,” he told reporters in Johannesburg.

Maimane was presenting the party's presidential handbook. In it the DA calls for the establishment of a parliamentary committee to oversee the presidency.

He believed the presidential jet Inkwazi had still not reached the end of its use.

“As far as airline standards are concerned, Inkwazi is still a very good plane. It still has a life, so long as it is maintained.”

The party had asked for the plane’s flight logs, going as far as asking the director general of the defence department, but had been refused access to them.

Instead of spending between R2 billion and R4bn on a new jet, the money could be used to fund students, Maimane said.

“You can't rob the people of South Africa. It is defrauding the poor. This matter's timing is crucial." 

In 2015, Zuma faced intense criticism following reports that R4bn would be spent on acquiring a new plane for himself and his entourage.

The luxury jet would reportedly have a conference room, bathroom, and private bedroom, and accommodate 30 passengers.

Mosiuoa Lekota, who was defence minister when Inkwazi was bought 15 years ago, said it cost R300m, plus another R108m to fit and decorate the interior, according to News24's archive.

During the outcry over Zuma's R4bn jet, University of Pretoria politics lecturer Roland Henwood told News24 that only US President Barack Obama had a better plane than Zuma.

"There are world leaders who have presidential jets, but they are business jets. They are much smaller than what he [Zuma] has at this stage," Henwood said.

"Only President Obama has a better aircraft."


Read more on:    saaf  |  jacob zuma

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