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P30m splashed on new cars for ministers 

SHARE   |   Wednesday, 19 July 2017   |   By Phillimon Mmeso
P30m splashed on new cars for ministers 

Government has once again splurged millions of Pula on luxury cars including the latest BMWs and SUVs for cabinet ministers, their deputies, Speaker of the National Assembly and leader of Opposition. Information gathered by this publication shows that government bought BMW 740e, Jeep Grand Cherokee and Ford Everest SUVs. “Drivers for all the cabinet ministers were recently taken for training at Capital Motors on the latest BMW 7 Series and completed training this week,” revealed a source at Government Enclave. Cabinet ministers are expected to start using their latest BMW soon. The latest BMW 7 series will replace the existing BMWs currently used by cabinet ministers. Some ministries have added Jeep Cherokee and Ford Everest as their off road cars replacing the Toyota Fortuner. Research by this publication has shown that one BMW 7 Series 2017 edition is worth more P1 million, Ford Everest about P714,500 while Jeep Cherokee goes for P626, 661. Prices are often adjusted up quarterly. With the number of cabinet ministers having ballooned, the total cost of the BMWs is said to be in region of P30 million excluding other expenses and that of SUVs. Currently they are 18 cabinet ministers and 10 assistant ministers, making it to over P28 million. Adding to that official cars for the Speaker of the National Assembly and Leader of Opposition, the amount goes over P31 million.

BMW 7 series have an Ambient Air Package that ionizes a choice of eight perfumes, and a 16-speaker, 1,400-watt Bowers and Wilkins surround sound audio system. The latest BMW's remote controlled parking feature can park the 7-Series into a garage or parking space. The Jeep Cherokee has already been bought as one is used by the Assistant Minister of Presidential Affairs and Public Administration Thato Kwerepe. In 2008 after President Ian Khama assumed office the Mercedes Benzes were replaced by the black BMW 7 series 2008 edition. Contacted for comment, the Minister of Transport and Communications Kitso Mokaila confirmed that they are replacing the old BMW7 series with the latest ones. He said the current fleet has passed its lifespan and was out of warranty thus costing government lots of money to maintain. “We have to understand that the modern cars are time bound not mileage bound. We looked at different models but decided to settle for BMW,” he said. On the procurement of other models like Jeep and Ford, Mokaila said that it is up to each ministry to decide which vehicle they want to buy.