A promise by beleaguered South African Airways (SAA) to provide flights for President Cyril Ramaphosa is costing the government millions, according to a report by the City Press.
The Air Force has leased SAA jets for Ramaphosa when no commercial flights are available.
This has turned out to be very expensive because the Air Force paid R1.5 million for a single return flight between Cape Town and Johannesburg on 21 June 2018.
The flight took 30 people but could have accommodated 316 passengers. This is not the only time this type of flight has taken place.
City Press stated that as a result of the SAA plane leasing, the Air Force has spent R50 million in four months on flights.Aviation experts were quoted as saying that, by comparison, renting a private jet for 30 people for the same flight would have cost R350,000.
It further stated that the Air Force cannot keep its own VIP fleet running.
Defense spokesperson Siphiwe Dlamini said the Air Force would pay for all VIP flights until a new tender had been finalised.
Recently, South Africans have felt very despondent since Ramaphosa has taken office with public sentiment having shifted somewhat.
Since Friday, a number of citizens have taken to social media to voice their frustration with the president. Most people are upset over the increase in food prices and fuel, as well as the increase in VAT
The hashtag #SinceWeSentRamaphosa began trending across the country on Friday afternoon.