‘My private jet to USA was cheaper,’ says President Ruto

KENYA
‘My private jet to USA was cheaper,’ says President Ruto

President Ruto on Sunday May 26, 2024 clarified that the expenses for his trip to the US were much lower than if he had flown with Kenya Airways.

Ruto traveled to the US on an A6-RJU royal jet. In a statement on X, the president mentioned receiving concerns about why he didn’t use the presidential jet or Kenya Airways plane for his state visit to the US.

Ruto responded by explaining that his selection of the plane for the US trip was based on his commitment to using State resources.

“Fellow Kenyans, I have noted concerns about my mode of transport to the USA. As a responsible steward of public resources and in keeping with my determination for us to live within our means and that I should lead from the front in so doing, the cost was less than travelling on KQ,” Ruto said.

The president however, did not disclose the cost of the chartered jet or the potential expenses for a Kenya Airways flight.

President Ruto emphasized that it was unreasonable for people to keep repeating claims that the jet was leased for five days at a cost of Ksh200 million.

“I think the expenditure on my trip is completely exaggerated. They actually border on ridiculous. I am very careful about the resources that I spend,” he stated.

While denying the Ksh200 million claim, the President did not indicate how much taxpayer money was used to fund the US trip.

According to official communication from state house, Nairobi, the president couldn’t use the presidential jet for the US trip since it hasn’t been to the US since it’s purchase in the 90s.

The state house official stated that the jet’s design is suitable for operating in Europe, Africa, and the Middle East.

State House Press Secretary Emmanuel Talam stated that the plane couldn’t be used due to the need to refuel five times.

Reports indicate that hiring a Boeing business jet like the one Ruto used could cost around$18,000 per hour, approximately Sh2,358,000.

The trip to Atlanta, US, where Ruto made a stop, takes about 19 hours from Kenya, which would amount approximately Sh71,404,500 at the rate.

Additionally the US embassy previously stated that they did not cover President Ruto’s travel expenses to the US.

“Just to be clear: The United States of America did not pay for President Ruto’s jet to the U.S,” U.S. Embassy-Nairobi spokesperson Andrew Veveiros told a local media house.

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