Kenyan politicians have for a while been famed for flamboyant lifestyles and making grand entrances to social events.
According to sources at the Kenya Civil Aviation Authorities (KCAA), politicians own more than half of the 50 helicopters registered with the aviation body.
President Uhuru Kenyatta owns a number of choppers, some of which he leases out occasionally.
One of his most popular helicopters is the 5Y JNM which was leased and branded by Kirinyaga Woman Representative Purity Ngirichi for about 8 months ahead of the August elections.
It was among the fleet of choppers that caused a stir at the burial of the late Nyeri Governor Nderitu Gachagua, where mourners were treated to a show of might by politicians.
Deputy President William Ruto has 3 choppers, which he hired out to Uasin Gishu gubernatorial aspirant Bundotich Zedekiah Kiprop (Buzeki) during the Jubilee Party primaries though the latter lost.
Opposition Chief Raila Odinga owns a Eurocopter which he uses during some of his local travels.
Other politicians who form part of this elite team include retired President Mwai Kibaki – 5Y FWE, former Gatanga Member of Parliament Peter Kenneth, National Super Alliance (NASA) co-principal Musalia Mudavadi – 5Y TXM, former Minister Nicholas Biwott, businessman Jimmy Wanjigi, veteran Kisii politician Simeon Nyachae – 5Y HSN, Baringo Senator Gideon Moi and Embu Senator Lenny Kivuti.
An official at the Airport chartering department told Kenyans.co.ke that chartered helicopters cost between Sh170,000 and Sh200,000 per hour with considerations of distance as well as the period of time for which they will be hired.
Branding the helicopter is charged at Sh100,000 for every five days it remains branded with some service providers charging an additional insurance fee.