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In a cash strapped country--


Edwin Rommel
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Mbeki flies for R12.5m

06/07/2005 16:17

Cape Town - Flights on the presidential jet used mainly by President Thabo Mbeki and top officials over a period of six months cost a total of R12.54m, according to defence minister Mosioua Lekota.

The six month period was from October 7 last year to April 8 this year.

International flights cost R10.15m and national flights amounted to R2.3m.

Lekota was replying to a question in parliament from Democratic Alliance MP Gareth Morgan.

The total catering bill for these flights was nearly R132 000.

Trip to Belgium

The highest cost of catering on one trip was R33 266 when President Mbeki went to Belgium accompanied by his wife and a number of top officials.

Accommodation costs were R71 000 during this time.

Mbeki is understood to have met the president of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso and the prime ministers of Belgium and the Netherlands during this trip.

They flew from Waterkloof Air Force Base on November 15 2004 to Brussels in Belgium and then departed to Strasbourg, France on November 17, leaving the same day for Leiden, Netherlands.

They then departed the following day for Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, leaving on November 19 for South Africa.

Catering costs 'staggering'

Morgan said on Wednesday that in response to a question to Lekota in April, it had emerged the catering cost per passenger for the trips for the six-month period was "a staggering R872 per passenger".

"The question needs to be asked what the president and his cohort were dining on: caviar and foie gras, perhaps?

"Accommodation on the (all the) trips cost R400 000," said Morgan.

Morgan said one other flight cost in excess of R1m.

In January this year the president flew to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

He flew with ten passengers whose accommodation cost the taxpayer R95 480.

Mbeki flew back via Nigeria where he attended the 4th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union in Abuja.

Two of the flights were registered under the names of then deputy president Jacob Zuma and one under the name of Local Government Minister Sydney Mufamadi.

R7.00 = $1 approx...

and then I still have to pay my taxes??

:(

any jobs going stateside?

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Or run for office!

Rommel for president -- President Rommel!

It has a nice ring do it, don't you think? And you can't beat the fringe benefits ...

:D

Ja! Und zhe Kongressional Aidez! ;) Zhe down zide iz zhe frequent dry cleanink billz! :D

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