Mr Maynier (DA) to ask the Minister of Defence and Military Veterans:
1. How many (a) international and (b) domestic flights were undertaken by the Deputy President using (i) aircraft operated by the military, (ii) aircraft chartered by the military or (iii) commercial aircraft between 10 May 2009 and the latest specified date for which information is available;
2. in respect of each specified flight, (a) what was the (i) date and (ii) place of (aa) departure and (bb) arrival and (b) what was the (i) total cost and (ii) breakdown of the costs of such flights? NW2404E
(1) (a) The Deputy President undertook 5 international flights.
(1) (b) The Deputy President undertook 51 domestic flights.
(1) (b) (i) The Deputy President used 51 domestic flights operated by the Military (SA Air Force).
(1) (b) (ii) The Deputy President used 3 flights chartered by the Military (SA Air Force), in the event that appropriate capacity was not available.
(1) (b) (iii) The South African Air Force is tasked with the responsibility to secure, execute and coordinate all flight arrangements except in instances where commercial flights are used. In the latter case, The Presidency and the VIP Police coordinate.
As the Honourable Member is no doubt aware, the SA Air Force is responsible for the air transportation of the sitting President and the Deputy President. Furthermore, air transportation is provided for former Presidents Mandela and Mbeki when they conduct official duties.
The Honourable Member will also appreciate that our air transport fleet is ageing and thus chartered services are procured by the SA Air Force as and when the need arises. The Department of Defence is however considering long-term sustainable solutions to remedy this situation.
In conclusion, the Member should note that the Deputy President has also used the National Carrier to travel to Europe and we are studying the viability of this arrangement considering protocol, security as well as the convenience of the public in this regard.
2.The Honourable Member is once again advised to raise this request with the Joint Standing Committee on Defence and Military Veterans.
Issued by Parliament, November 8 2010
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