By Mandy Wiener
July 9th, 2012
The payment was made after Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula announced the process to procure the new R2-billion Boeing 777 luxury jet for the president was cancelled.
Mapisa-Nqakula on Friday appealed to the public to give her a chance to deal with the sensitive issue of transporting state officials.
The problem of transporting VVIPS has long plagued the defence ministry.
Mapisa-nqakula said the ministry is seeking legal advice on the status of the process to lease planes to transport state officials.
She was also quizzed why a 300-seater plane was needed for the president.
“There wasn’t a signed contract. Boeing happened to have this plane at the time after a client cancelled their order. This plane was then offered to the South African government.”
Mapisa-Nqakula cancelled the deal, but said the process of acquiring transport for state officials will restart before an investigation by Public Protector Thuli Madonsela is finalised.
South Africa’s fleet of state official planes including the president’s current plane is constantly undergoing maintenance and service because of the many years it is being used.
She said she has not spoken to her predecessor Lindiwe Sisulu about the matter, but will be meeting with her next week.
- South Africa: Procurement of VIP planes canceled (apperi.org)
- South Africa: Cancellation of Zuma jet purchase welcomed (procurement.tv)