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Presidential jet grounded due to ‘leak’

President Zuma was left stranded in Burundi after his private jet was deemed unsafe to take off on Friday.

President Jacob Zuma at an ANC election rally in Tlokwe on Thursday 20 March 2014. Picture: Vumani Mkhize/EWN
Jacob Zuma,Burundi,presidential jet
Local Politics

JOHANNESBURG - The South African National Defence Force (SANDF) says the technical glitch the presidential jet experienced in Burundi was due to a leak.

President Jacob Zuma was left stranded in Burundi after his private jet was deemed unsafe to take off on Friday.

He was leading a delegation of African Heads of State who were in the country in a bid to calm deadly tensions there.

The SANDF's Simphiwe Dlamini says another jet was dispatched yesterday.

“When they were doing a routine check on the plane, they discovered that somewhere along the wing, there was a leakage of some sort, which they attended to but they didn’t want to compromise the safety of the president and his entourage. They therefore decided to dispatch another plane to fetch them.”

The president was expected to deliver the keynote note address at the African National Congress Women's League fundraising gala dinner in Sandton on Friday night.

But instead, Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa addressed delegates, saying Zuma may only arrive in the country yesterday.

Ramaphosa said yesterday, “He went to the airport and sought to get into his plane and it would not move so he’s stuck there and he can’t come back home. We might have to send another plane to fetch him.”  

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