President Museveni clocks up 150,000 miles in three years; What 'bout Kikwete? | JamiiForums | The Home of Great Thinkers

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President Museveni clocks up 150,000 miles in three years; What 'bout Kikwete?

Discussion in 'International Forum' started by Shadow, Dec 14, 2009.

  1. Shadow

    Shadow JF-Expert Member

    Dec 14, 2009
    Joined: May 19, 2008
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    Duh waafrika kwa kupenda kutembeza kopo na kura raha kwa gharama yoyote ile. Je tutafika kwenye nchi ya ahadi yenye vijito vya asali na maziwa?

    President Museveni clocks up 150,000 miles in three years

    Indeed he is a cruising President considering the fact that Mr Museveni has flown at least 150,066 miles in the last three years. Sunday Monitor Team can also reveal that the President has been in the air for 284 hours in the recent past. Read on:-
    When President Museveni flew his daughter Natasha in 2003 to Germany to deliver his grandchild using Uganda’s presidential jet, he brushed off critics saying the $20,000 return flight was necessary to ensure the security of his daughter.
    “I regard myself and my immediate family as a principal target for the criminal forces,” argued Mr Museveni in a strongly worded statement at the time. “When it comes to medical care for myself and my family there is no compromise.” [​IMG] AROUND THE WORLD: This graphic shows the number of flights the President has made in the last three years.

    A week ago, however, Mr Museveni made a rare compromise, flying from London to Entebbe on the economy class of a British Airways flight. The move, according to President Museveni’s Press Secretary Tamale Mirundi, showed a down-to-earth president who was trying to show civil servants across the country how to serve their country on the cheap.
    “If President Museveni can travel economy class, it is an indication that spending colossal sums of money by government officials on business and first class is going to stop,” Mr Mirundi told The New Vision.
    Flying habit?
    While the President wants government officials to fly on the cheap, his own foreign travel record tells the tale of a leader who picks his fair share of air miles. A Sunday Monitor investigation shows that over the last three years, President Museveni has clocked up at least 150,066 flight miles on his foreign travels to and from Uganda – which is equivalent to six trips around the world.
    Experts say the old presidential jet, a Gulfstream IV Executive plane that was used for most of these journeys, can cruise at a maximum speed of 527 miles per hour. According to conservative estimates, this means that the President has spent at least 284 hours in the air.
    With the presidential jet requiring $10,000 (about Shs20 million) to fly it per hour, according to Capt. Babu, a former pilot, it implies that President Museveni could have spent at least $2.48 million (about Shs4.7 billion) on flights to different parts of the world using the presidential jet in the last three years.
    The President’s travels over that period alone have taken him to nearly every corner of the world. According to the Sunday Monitor investigation, in 2007, President Museveni travelled officially to at least 10 countries.
    They include New Zealand and Singapore in March 2007, Eritrea on a two-day state visit from April 01, London-UK for the Africa Business Summit on June 5 and Malaysia on August 07 to attend the Langkavi International Dialogue.
    Other trips in 2007 included two to Arusha, Tanzania for the East African Community summit on August 20 and the DR Congo-Uganda Summit on September 6.
    The President also travelled to Washington DC in the United States to meet the then US President George Bush on November 02, to Cape Town in South Africa for the US-Africa Business Summit, to Addis Ababa in Ethiopia for the Tripartite Summit on December 5 and then to Portugal on December 9 for the second EU-Africa Business Summit.
    In 2008, President Museveni made 16 official trips. They include one to Nairobi on January 23 to mediate in the Kenyan post-election crisis, a second to Addis Ababa in Ethiopia for the 10th African Union Summit on February 2 and a third on March 11 to London-UK.
    The President also travelled to India on April 11 for the Africa-India Summit, to Juba in Southern Sudan on April 14, to the Kenyan capital Nairobi on April 17 for the swearing in of President Mwai Kibaki, to Arusha –Tanzania for an African Union meeting on May 21, to the Japanese capital Tokyo on May 27 as well as to the US and UK for a six-day trip.
    President Museveni then travelled to Lusaka-Zambia on July 29 for the Global Southern African Conference/Comesa, to Swaziland on September 7 for their Independence Day celebrations, to Ireland on a three-day state visit from September 19 and to Kansas-US for the UN General Assembly on September 27. The President wound up his travels in 2008 with a trip to Nairobi on November 7.
    In 2009, President Museveni travelled to Zimbabwe on June 13 for the 13th Comesa meet, Germany on June 18, Kigali-Rwanda on July 13 for their 15th Liberation anniversary celebrations, to Lusaka-Zambia for the third conference on the Great Lakes, then to Russia for a four-day state visit starting August 22.
    The President also travelled to London-UK on September 19, New York-US on September 25, Sharm el-Sheik-Egypt on November 8 for the Forum on China-Africa, Addis Ababa-Ethiopia on November 17, Arusha-Tanzania on November 21, Trinidad and Tobago for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (Chogm) in November and Havana-Cuba on December 2.
    Whenever the President travels out of the country, there is an advance team that goes to prepare for his trip. It includes officials from President’s office, the Presidential Guard Brigade to provide security and officials from each of the government ministries who are expected to participate in meetings, members of parliament among others.
    Wanted speed
    While President Museveni has not received heavy criticism for the many journeys that he makes out of the country every year, many of which are necessary for him to perform his executive duties.
    However, he came under attack late last year following revelations that the government was set to spend Shs88.2 billion (about 47 million) for a new Gulfstream V extra special performance executive jet, apparently to enable him travel faster and more comfortably.
    At the time, officials from the President’s Office said the government would sell the old jet at $24 million (about Shs40 billion) to expedite the acquisition of the new jet.
    “We have put the current presidential jet on sale because we are soon acquiring a new jet,” Mr Muhinda said during a July 22, 2008 meeting with legislators. “We are going to sell it at $24 million and we don’t want any delays because the more we delay the more the resale value diminishes.”
    That did not happen, however, and the government has for the last year held on to the old jet as well. According to anti-corruption activists, this is yet another sign that the president was only show-boating when he hoped onto the British Airway flight.“For a man who has two jets for his official travels, once in a while to move in economy class, is that news?” asked Mr Robert Lugolobi from Transparency International in Uganda, who described the flight as a “one-off drama” staged by the President.
    Mr Lugolobi says if President Museveni wants to be taken seriously on cost-cutting, he should sell the jets and invest the money obtained in sectors that benefit all citizens.