The Democratic Alliance (DA) said that they have confirmed that there is nothing wrong with the president’s current jet Inkwazi.
As a result, the party called for any procurement of a new jet to be scrapped.
“Following an oversight visit to the South African Air Force (SAAF) in Pretoria, the DA can confirm that there is nothing wrong with President Zuma’s Jet, Inkwazi, except for the routine maintenance repair of ‘snags’ after each flight similar to any commercial airline,” the DA’s Kobus Marais said in a statement.
The party also said that President Jacob Zuma has proven that South African Airways is a viable alternative for the occasional long-haul intercontinental flight.
According to Marais, the funds set aside for a new jet should be used to maintain Inkwazi, as well as other jets from the South African Air Force (SAAF).
“The Chief of the SAAF, Lt Gen Fabian Msimang, has expressed pride in the reliability of among others Inkwazi, his only concern being the inadequate budget allocation for spare parts for routine maintenance. He also confirmed that this challenge with Inkwazi will also apply to any new aircraft to be procured,” Marais said.
The DA criticised the “fiscal black hole” created by expensive travel for politicians and called for the presidency to cut costs due to South Africa’s current economic pressures.