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Malawi VP’s plane lost radar, search and rescue operation launched

Malawi president fire cabinet graft
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A plane with Malawi’s Vice President (VP) Saulos Chilima and nine others on board has lost radar, according to a statement from the Malawai president’s office. The Malawi Defense Force aircraft lost contact after taking off from Lilongwe, the capital, on Monday at 9:17 a.m. local time, BBC reported.

Malawai President orders search and rescue for VP plane that lost radar

The president ordered a search and rescue operation after aviation officials couldn’t reach the aircraft. It was scheduled to land at Mzuzu International Airport in the north just after 10:00 local time (11:00 BST).

Government spokeswoman and Secretary to the President and Cabinet, Colleen Zamba, spoke with the media about the Malawi Defense Force plane. β€œAll efforts by aviation authorities to contact the aircraft since it went off the radar have failed thus far,” Zamba said.

“As such, the Commander of the Malawi Defense Force, General Valentino Phiri, has since informed His Excellency Dr. Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera of the incident,” Zamba has said in a statement.

After learning about the incident, Malawi’s President Lazarus Chakwera canceled his planned flight to the Bahamas. He ordered all regional and national agencies to immediately conduct a search and rescue operation to locate the plane.

Vice President Saulos Chilima feared dead in chopper crash

Fears are growing that Malawi Vice President Saulos Chilima has died in a crash landing in Chikangawa forest after his helicopter failed to land at Mzuzu Airport this morning.

Information obtained by Malawi24 indicates that Chilima was on a Malawi Defense Force helicopter to attend the funeral of lawyer Ralph Kasambara. However, the helicopter couldn’t land at the airport due to bad weather.

It is feared that the helicopter crashed on its return. According to sources, a crash was witnessed in the Chikangawa forest area, and it is believed to be the helicopter carrying Chilima.

Other sources reported that Chilima’s phone was last active around 10:30 am this morning. The plane was expected to return to Lilongwe within an hour after departing from Mzuzu.

Chilima, who is 51, has served as Vice President since February 2020 and previously held the position from 2014 to 2019. He has also served as Minister of Economic Planning and Development.


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Brendan Taylor

Brendan Taylor was a TV news producer for 5 and a half years. He is an experienced writer. Brendan covers Breaking News at Insider Paper.

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