Questions over cost of Zuma's chartered flight to US

Three years ago, it cost SA taxpayers over R6m to charter a flight for Zuma to the US.

President Jacob Zuma acccompanied by his Wife Mrs Bongi Zuma arrives at JF Kennedy International Airport in New York on 21 September. Picture: GCIS.

PRETORIA - While the Department of Defence has confirmed the presidential jet is in for a service, it has not detailed how much it's costing taxpayers to charter a private jet for President Jacob Zuma.

Eyewitness News revealed on Tuesday that the president arrived in New York on a private jet, the same one controversially leased three years ago for more than R6 million.

The Boeing 727-200 is operated by Fortune Air, which is owned by African National Congress (ANC)-funder Ivor Ichikowitz.

Three years ago, it cost South African tax payers more than R6 million to charter a flight for Zuma to the United States.

The South African National Defence Force has not provided answers to the question of how much it is costing this time around.

Zuma is being flown on the same 727-200 the Presidency was leasing in 2011.

The ministry says chartering aircraft is an option when the presidential jet is unavailable and has been approved as part of a contract authorised by the National Treasury.

Zuma is in New York to attend the 69th session of the General Assembly of the United Nations in New York taking place from 24-30 September.