/ 6 March 2012

Sport ministers rack up millions in flight costs

Sport Ministers Rack Up Millions In Flight Costs

Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula and his deputy Gert Oosthuizen have been on more plane trips since 2010 than their counterparts in international relations, The Star reported on Tuesday.

They spent R2.6-million on 345 domestic and international flights since 2010.

That is 186 more flights than the minister and deputy minister of international relations and cooperation.

International Relations and Cooperation Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane and her two deputies, Marius Fransman and Ebrahim Ebrahim, took a combined total of 159 domestic and international flights during the same period, said Democratic Alliance MP Winston Rabotapi, according to the newspaper.

In a reply in Parliament to questions by Rabotapi, Mbalula said that since April 1 2010 Oosthuizen spent R1.1-million on 105 flights, including 29 international flights at a cost of R806 293.

Mbalula spent R747 410 on 16 international flights.

Rabotapi has asked that the chairperson of the committee on sport call on Mbalula and Oosthuizen to explain their travel expenses.

He also intends asking the Public Protector to investigate the purpose and necessity of the flights, The Star reported. — Sapa