Zuma jet: Presidency wants answers from Dept of Defence


The Presidency has confirmed its request for more details from the Department of Defence, regarding the intended purchase of a VIP jet for President Jacob Zuma.

Over the weekend, CityPress reported that the defence force’s procurement agency, Armscor, had published a select number of details on its website, which stipulates that the plane must be able to carry 30 passengers, have a range of 13 800 km, be equipped with an eight seat conference venue as well as a private bedroom and bathroom. It has been alleged that the project will cost an estimated R4-billion.

“The Presidency has also requested the Department to ensure that the public is briefed on the matter as much as possible but without compromising security,” a statement read.

Opposition parties have meanwhile lashed out at the intended purchase with the Democratic Alliance (DA) calling on Zuma to publically scrap the order as the country’s economy continues to shrink.

“In strained financial times, and with more important priorities needing funding, the President cannot possibly ‘need’ such a luxury,” DA Shadow Minister of Defence Kobus Marais said.

Similarly, Congress of the People (Cope) Spokesperson Dennis Bloem said the buying of the jet rates as a “national disgrace”, adding that government under Zuma appears to have gone “insane”.

“South Africa cannot afford the ANC government. The Zuma administration is impervious to the hardships of the people at large. It is spending recklessly and leaving a mountain of debt to the next generation to pay off,” Bloem said.

“We simply cannot afford massive expenditure on vanity projects (as) our debt is too high and our economy wobbling”.