Jet-setting Mugabe spends $3.5m to charter plane to Singapore, Mexico

President Robert Mugabe has so far this year spent more days outside the country than he has spent at home, it’s been reported. This month alone he has spent $3.5m chartering a flight for trips to Singapore and Cancun in Mexico.

Source: Jet-setting Mugabe spends $3.5m to charter plane to Singapore, Mexico | News24

Harare – This is why he’s known as Zimbabwe’s ‘visiting president’: so far this year Robert Mugabe has spent more days outside the country he’s ruled for 37 years than he’s spent at home, it’s been reported.

Until May 27, when Mugabe got back from a week-long jaunt to Mexico, the president had spent 77 days outside the country, reports the Standard.

Only 69 days had been spent at home.

Luxury Boeing

Mugabe, 93, recently had to charter a luxury Boeing as the Air Zimbabwe plane he usually uses is grounded for servicing.

The paper said Mugabe began his 2017 travels on January 17, while still on official leave in Dubai, with a trip to China.

9 countries, 3 continents

Since then, the paper estimates he’s covered 145 000km, and clocked a staggering 250 hours in the air.

Countries he has so far visited on three continents include China, Ethiopia, Ghana, Mali, Mauritius, Singapore (twice), South Africa, Swaziland and Mexico.

The Zimbabwe Independent, a respected business weekly, estimates that this month alone the president spent $3.5 million chartering a plane for trips to Singapore and Cancun in Mexico.

$1 million for 4 days

The paper identified the plane as a Comlux Aviation Boeing 767.

“It costs one million US dollars to hire the plane for four days so Mugabe paid that when he went to Singapore,” an unnamed aviation source told the paper.

“The plane also attracted close to half a million dollars in charges when it was parked for six days, from May 13 to May 18 while the cabin crew was at a local hotel. Mugabe paid close to 2 million US dollars for the nine days the plane took him to Mexico.”

President pays 

But transport minister Joram Gumbo, while declining to disclose the amount spent on the Mexico trip, suggested that chartering a plane is no more expensive than flying Air Zimbabwe.

“Air Zimbabwe is used at cost and the rates are the same. Every last penny is paid for by the president’s office,” he told the paper.

Large entourage

Mugabe invariably travels with a large entourage, including state media journalists who get paid daily expenses in scarce foreign currency. Critics say the country gains nothing from these expensive trips.

COMMENTS

WORDPRESS: 3
  • comment-avatar
    Ndonga 5 years ago

    The stupidity of the ZANU PF Government is mind almost unbelievable.

    But Joram Gumbo the Honourable Transport Minister must be the most silly of that lot. If you don’t believe me look what he says here…

    “But transport minister Joram Gumbo, while declining to disclose the amount spent on the Mexico trip, suggested that chartering a plane is no more expensive than flying Air Zimbabwe.

    “Air Zimbabwe is used at cost and the rates are the same. Every last penny is paid for by the president’s office,” he told the paper.”

    Where does he think that the “Presidents Office” get its money from. From the sky? From the West? From the East? From Mugabe?

    No you silly man, from the people of Zimbabwe, while they go hungry, homeless and cold while Mugabe and all his many high spending jet setter cohorts are gallivanting (and often staggering) all over the World doing bogger all…

    Waken up Joram and admit to what is happening. Just dream of your many deep potholes that US$ 3.5 million could have mended!

  • comment-avatar
    Farai 5 years ago

    The minister has now just proven that this is tax payers money by saying ” Every last penny is paid for by the president’s office” – the presidents office is solely funded by taxpayers and therefore when our country is burning Mugabe sees it fit to spend millions of tax payers dollars just so he can play around overseas.

  • comment-avatar
    Fallenz 5 years ago

    Agreed. But, someone backed the communist insurgency. Someone chose to pick up weapons and join the fight. Someone killed and maimed innocents with market bombs. Someone put Mugabe in charge. Someone has used violence to keep him in power.

    Now, I ask… who are those “somebodies”..? Let them step forward and explain how stupid they were. Let them tell us they did not understand that this is how communist-inspired governments work. Let them explain how a communist economy works that provides jobs and opportunities for income, food, and fees for school. Let them explain how one man can steal and squander so much from people who have nothing left. Let those valiant somebodies speak… or let them hide in shame.