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Zuma's R6.3m US flight

Government paid R6.3 million to fly President Jacob Zuma to the United States, Defence Minister Lindiwe...

Minister of Defence and Military Veterans Lindiwe Sisulu. Picture: Taurai Maduna/Eyewitness News

Government paid R6.3 million to fly President Jacob Zuma to the United States, Defence Minister Lindiwe Sisulu confirmed on Wednesday.

Earlier in 2011, Eyewitness News revealed that Zuma flew on a revamped 727 plane owned by arms dealer and ANC backer Ivor Ichikowitz. The president was travelling to the United Nations General Assembly.

In October, two senior defence force officials resigned over the leasing of private jets for VIPs.

In the written reply to a Parliamentary question, Sisulu confirmed the cost of the trip to New York and Houston.

Around R3.7 million was spent on the aircraft and crew, while the bill for fuel and handling was R2.6 million.

The minister said the Boeing 727 was leased from Fortune Air, because the Presidential jet was undergoing a service. The official plane was out of commission until the end of November.

Meanwhile, it is understood Sisulu was so furious with the leasing of planes for VIPs, she summoned Defence Secretary Mpumi Mpofu to her office to explain. Mpofu subsequently resigned over the issue.

Timeline

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